The case for residential solar

Have you been interested in solar panels for your home and had questions, but did not want to get pressured by a company salesman? Do you want to know if solar can save you money and not sure about costs? Think electric costs are going to be cheaper in the future? How many solar panels would it take to offset your electric bill? Want to talk to someone who uses residential solar, is from the local area, and tells it like it is?

Get the facts at the The Case for Residential Solar program on Saturday, April 16 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Biodiversity Education Center at Coppell Nature Park, 367 Freeport Parkway in Coppell. The program is part of the “FCNP Guest Lecture Series,” a series of community seminars by the Friends of Coppell Nature Park foundation that facilitate adult and youth education from academic to professional to hobby.

Brandon Morton, professor at North Lake College, and Coppell resident Lou Duggan will provide actual residential costs, results, and hands-on experiences as garnered from personal experience and area residents who use solar to offset rising electrical demand. House size, electrical usage, actual construction costs, resultant savings, payback of installation cost, energy credits, utility compatibilities, and panel durability will also be addressed during the seminar. Attendance is free of charge.

“Solar energy in this country is becoming very affordable to the point of making residential use more and more attractive,” said Kathy Martin, President of the Friends of Coppell Nature Park foundation. “The emphasis of this seminar will offer a better understanding for possible personal-use of such technology by the average home owner. It will be a very interesting, insightful program.”

Morton is the sustainability coordinator, and an adjunct professor of biology, at North Lake College (NLC), part of the Dallas County Community College District (DCCCD). With more than ten years working in the sustainability sector, he specializes in environmental impact assessment, public policy, and energy. Morton is also President of the Sustainability Management Association, an international organization of professionals from industry, government, and higher education focused on transforming leadership through economic performance, environmental stewardship, and social responsibility.

Duggan is a former mayor of Coppell. Later he served 10 years as executive director of the Friends of Coppell Nature Park foundation. He and his wife installed a solar array on their home in January 2012. He has tracked utility costs for the years prior to installation of the array as well as recording monthly utility bills for more than 4 years thereafter. In addition, he has watched his solar array weather several significant storms in Coppell including the massive hail storm of Easter 2012 when the City was pummeled by soft-ball size hail stones.

The FCNP Guest Lecture Series has been approved for advanced training credit for any North Texas Master Naturalist. The Texas Master Naturalist(TM) volunteer program is coordinated by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and supported by a variety of local organizations.

The Biodiversity Education Center (BEC) at 367 Freeport Parkway is situated on 70 acres of nature preserve within Wagon Wheel Park. It is a “green” constructed building with more than 5,800 square feet under roof. The Center receives power from 96 solar panels and includes a cistern that captures 9,400 gallons of rain water. Landscaping around the center is designed to feature Texas native and adaptive plants while reducing water consumption and providing a habitat for wildlife such as butterflies, hummingbirds, birds, and bees. The Center is only open to the public during program offerings.


SOURCE Friends of Coppell Nature Park