Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Google Sunroof

My wife and I continually discuss energy cutting measures with our daughters.  We've explained the purpose of turning off lights when not in use and keeping showers to a minimum as greater hot water usage results in greater energy consumption and cost.  In addition we've explained why we set the thermostat higher/lower when we are out for several hours at a time.  One thing we've haven't done is talk to them about solar power.  They know the Sun is a great energy source, but we've never linked it to energy usage in our home, mainly as a result of not having solar panels on the house.  Enter Project Sunroof.

Project Sunroof

Project Sunroof is a Google tool that lets you see how much solar energy is available to your house and how much of your roof is available for solar panels.  Right now it is only available in San Francisco and Boston, but will soon expand to the rest of the U.S.  Solar power is a great resource and has reduced in price dramatically over the last 10-15 years.  Costs are now on par, and in some cases cheaper, than other sources of energy.

Even if your area is unavailable on Project Sunroof, it's still a learning experience for you and your kids.  Solar power isn't usually something we think of when cooling and heating our homes, but it is becoming more widespread each year.

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