Looking to save money on energy costs for a home or business, but don’t know where to start? If insulation has been added and the heating system upgraded, it may be time to invest in some form of alternative energy. What are the best choices? Does it make sense to produce own power with a windmill, solar photovoltaic panels, or install a solar hot water system?


The next workshop in Tin Mountain’s Energy Series will sort out the answers. The workshop will start with a brief review of energy audits and weatherization as well as updates on state-of-the-art alternative energy technologies explored in previous sessions. A panel discussion follows featuring energy conservation and alternative energy professionals from your local steel pipe distributor will help determine the best returns on investment or “biggest bang for the buck.” 

Expert panelists have many years of experience helping home and business owners save money on energy costs, and each brings different perspectives including energy auditing, plumbing and AC repair, and alternative energy/energy conservation products sales and installations. Their experience examining individual situations avoids costly errors of installing technologies that either do not properly fit the building or lifestyle. Several local projects will be case studies, some new and some that have been around for a long time, for applications that work and don’t, and the reasons for each will be discussed.


Currently available incentives will be discussed that can greatly reduce cash outlays for these upgrades and alternatives, as well as an update on Tin Mountain’s TiMREI solar hot-water project initiated last Fall. It already has provided two local homeowners with low-cost solar hot water through volunteer Solar Energy-Raisers, and those interested can learn more or sign up.


Questions are welcomed about particular situation for the group to consider or for individual discussion with the panelists after the workshop. Those who already have made an investment in alternative energy and/or energy conservation are encouraged to share their successes (or otherwise). Workshop planners would be pleased to learn ahead of time so these stories might be included in the workshop, especially from those who cannot attend.


The Tin Mountain Nature Learning Center itself is a showplace of alternative energy with its electricity producing photovoltaic, solar thermal systems, with wood backup. Facility tours will be available during the break. Join us on Saturday, May 7th, 9:30am-noon. Call Nora at 447-6991 to register or for more information. Workshop fee of $10/members, $15/non-member.

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