Posts Tagged ‘Broward County’

5 April

Sunisthefuture Team Goes To State Capitol To Meet Senator Geraldine Thompson


Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

(Please click on red links below)

Being a resident of the beautiful Sunshine State of Florida,  I would love to see greater spread of solar installations (for the sake of cleaner, healthier, less war-proned planet earth and creation of local jobs) and be able to build a solar farm for future generations in Florida some day.  These are some of the main motive forces (in addition to memory of my father) behind my embarking on the journey of Sun Is The Future. I personally feel strong and urgent enough about the issues of energy-pollution-climate change that I have taken sabbatical from teaching university/college math to devote my time into educating general public about solar energy.  Along this route of sharing and discovery, I’ve come to realize that the most important driving forces behind solar installations any/every where on planet earth are policy and economics. For this reason, I’ve traveled (with my technical supporter and hubby Michael Nunamaker) to our state capitol, Tallahassee, on April 4, 2013, to see our Senator Geraldine F. Thompson, who proposed the renewable energy bill, SB 0498. We would have loved to travel to Tallahassee to meet with other solar advocates in March, but my March/Spring allergy delayed this trip. This is the first time in my life EVER that I have personally scheduled for an appointment with a State Senator concerning any legislation! Naturally, during the drive toward Tallahassee, I tried to mentally prepare myself with a short introductory speech, below:


Greetings, Senator Thompson,

Thank you for agreeing to meet with us on April 4, 2013,  at the Senate Office Building to discuss the SB 0498. My name is Susan Sun Nunamaker, next to me is my technical support and husband Michael Nunamaker. We are here representing . I started in 2011 as an educational site, advocating solar energy;then recruited Michael in 2012 for technical support. As the site has reached viewers/readers from 160 different countries across the globe, we’ve imbued ourselves in learning, researching, and comparatively analyzing renewable energy policies from different countries. So, we’d like to offer our input for any of your current or future renewable or solar energy bills.

During our research, we’ve come across a very informative document  produced by NREL, A Policymaker’s Guide to Feed-In-Tariff Policy Design at :
(Toby D. Couture is no longer with NREL but is reachable via , but I believe Karlynn Cory Claire Kreycik and Emily Williams are still at NREL)

Since we are strong proponents for solar energy, we’re very pleased to find that you are introducing the renewable energy bill, SB 0498.

Regarding SB 0498, its strength lies in the fact that it is clean and simple. However, it would be even stronger if:

  1. The  contract duration will be of 20-year term rather than 10-year term.
  2. The feed-in rate will not be fixed but subject to periodic re-evaluation by the Public Utility Commission depending on grid penetration and cost of solar (e.g.Germany now reassesses its feed-in rate on a monthly basis, much more frequently than in the earlier years). This type of periodic reassessments would help to avoid problems that occurred in Spain or Czechoslovakia, where the market became over-heated, resulting from overly generous feed-in rate that was not  reassessed frequently enough.

We hope you will be taking an interest in some issues in future bills, separately:

  1. Setting Solar/Renewable Energy Goal for the state of Florida, given that state of Florida is one of the 13 states that still does not have any Renewable Portfolio Standards or Goals
  2. Streamline the permitting process of solar PV and solar thermal so to reduce the cost and amount of time in completing the process. Residents at Broward County of Florida are now able to get a solar energy system permit online in just half an hour;please refer to Jefferery Halsey, Broward County of Florida’s Director of Pollution Prevention, Remediation, and Air Quality Division during the video clip below, at our Feb. 22, 2013 post of Sun Is The Future: Streamlining the permitting process would help to reduce costs for government and therefore be welcomed by both Democrats and Republicans.
  3. It seems feasible to introduce regulation to require solar thermal (solar hot water heating systems) when/where it is already a foregone conclusion that this would be an economically feasible approach in building design. Perhaps it is time to start the discussion in considering implementing this as part of the building code.

Senator Thompson, we here at Sun Is The Future of would be happy to assist with any future research or gathering of information and material concerning solar energy or effective renewable energy policy for the state of Florida.


sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker & Michael Nunamaker


This is the first time for us to visit Tallahassee;it is a beautiful city and state capitol, full of the Southern charm, with swaying Spanish moss adhering to majestically aged trees.

State Capitol of Florida, at Tallahassee, 2013, photographed by Susan Sun Nunamaker

With the help of Legislative Aides Roosevelt Holmes III

Legislative Aide Roosevelt Holme III, photographed by Susan Sun Nunamaker

and Dan Rogers,

Legislative Aide Dan Rogers, photographed by Susan Sun Nunamaker

we not only managed to present our findings to Senator Geraldine Thompson, but learned a great deal about the legislative process.  Even though it is  a very slow process that is often more reactionary rather than precautionary,  we are provided with many more contact names and information that will hopefully help to reach our cause of seeing more effective renewable/solar energy policies implemented in our beautiful Sunshine State of Florida. Hopefully, more effective solar/renewable energy policy’s implementation will occur soon enough for the officer standing next to the Great Seal of The State of Florida, right below (yes, we found out that he wants to build a solar home/house in the near future too! ).

Senator Geraldine Thompson (L), Susan Sun Nunamaker (middle), Michael Nunamaker (R), photographed by Roosevelt Holmes III

Officer standing next to The Great Seal of The State of Florida wants to build a solar home/house too ! Photographed by Susan Sun Nunamaker










~have a bright and sunny day~

written and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker

any of your comments or suggested will be welcomed at

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18 March

Bill Gallagher, President of SOLAR-FIT, Almost 4 Decades in Solar Business


Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

(Please click on red links below)

I’d like to introduce you to a solar entrepreneur, Mr. Bill Gallagher (President of SOLAR-FIT), who has been in solar business for 38 years (almost 4 decades) !  Having such a longevity in this youthful business, we can certainly learn a great deal from his experience.  Below is a video clip of the exchange I had with Bill on a sunny day in March at Holly Hill, Florida (where SOLAR-FIT is).  I apologize for my heavy nasal sound/voice as a result of my Spring allergy.

Solar-Fit provides a great variety of solar products and services for solar PV, solar thermal (with several days of backup system), solar ventilation system, heliocol solar pool system, and sun tunnel (which funnels natural light into any dark room).

Attic Ventilation System would help to reduce the cost of AC for Florida homes

Having Sun Tunnel would bring in more natural sunlight into a house/building


Bill also mentioned the one price online permitting process at Broward County (previously mentioned in our Feb. 22, 2013 post with Mr. Jeffery Halsey of Broward County of Florida)being able to help reduce a good percentage of the soft cost of solar projects. With the dropping cost of solar modules and the security of return that solar investments promise, investing in solar installations is the smart thing to do now. Not only are solar installations able to help reduce CO2 emission, they will also enable consumers to be better prepared for emergency situations (such as hurricanes). We are all hoping that there will be Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (RPS)and/or goals in the state of Florida and better structured solar incentives that would help to guide consumers toward the path for better use of our wonderful sunshine here in state of Florida.

Bill Gallagher, President of SOLAR-FIT of Holly Hill, FL, chatting with us about various solar systems that would help to reduce consumers’ expenditures and improve their living environment

Bill Gallagher in front of SOLAR-FIT of Holly Hill, FL, a solar business that’s been around for almost 4 decades !

After our visit to Bill’s SOLAR-FIT, we stopped by WNZF NewsRadio station to chat with Bill about Solar Energy and what has been developing at Sun Is The Future.  Because Holly Hill is not far from Daytona and there were two qualifying sessions set for Friday (March 15, 2013) at the Daytona International Speedway and the Daytona 200 on Saturday (March 16, 2013) for The 2013 Geico Motorcycle AMA pro Road Racing series event, I have never seen so many motorcyclists on the road in my life!


Motorcyclists seen in Holly Hill, FL, not far from Daytona, a day before the two qualifying sessions of Daytona 200 on Saturday, March 16, 2013, for the 2013 Geico Motorcycle AMA pro Road Racing Series event

Visiting WNZF NewsRadio station with host of the Renewable Energy Show (every Saturday, 10:30AM-11:00AM, at 1550AM and 106.3FM) host Bill Gallagher at right, Mark Gilliand the sound engineer of WNZF at left, and Susan and Michael of SunIsTheFuture in the middle

At the WNZF News Radio station,we found out that Bill had been busy not only as a solar entrepreneur, but also a terrific radio show host spreading the good news about renewable energy.You are all encouraged and welcomed to listen in to Bill’s Solar Fit Renewable Energy Show that airs every Saturday morning from 10:30 A.M.-11:00 A.M. at 1550 AM and 106.3 FM in state of Florida. Please feel free to contact Bill if you know of any solar enthusiasts, advocate, or entrepreneurs who would like to share his/her experience in solar business world. We chatted about the evolution of Sun Is The Future: how I started from a solar education blog in early 2011, to expanding to sunisthefuture Youtube Channel, recruiting hubby Michael to be the cameraman and technical support in 2012 ,  Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva, Online Sunisthefuture Stores, and  attention toward FIT (Feed-In-Tariff), also known as the CLEAN in CA, as a tool/method/incentive policy to help quickly spread the renewable or solar energy installations in USA.

For any information about solar systems at SOLAR-FIT or possibility of discussion about solar industry here in Florida and USA, please contact President Gallagher at:

  3. 386-441-2299

~have a bright and sunny day~

your comments and suggestions are always welcomed at


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22 February

We’re Going Further Than Reaching the Moon, We’re Reaching For The Sun


Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

(Please click on red links below)

People! People! My belief/suspicion has been confirmed !  Solar Industry is going to be BIG! Huge! In time, solar energy will no longer represent less than one percent of our energy portfolio.  If I were to wager on the matter, I’d bet that  solar energy will  eventually take care of more than 50% of our energy needs…just wait…in 10-20 years….

I’d like to invite you to a live discussion with Secretary of Energy Steven Chu on Friday, Feb. 22, 2013, at 2:00 pm EST, that was later streamed on Google +, Youtube, and on the progress of  SunShot Initiative and the role solar power is playing in our growing clean energy economy.  Questions were taken in advance and during the Hangout: via emailing, posting comments on the Energy Department’s Facebook page,  Google+ event, or tweeting @ENERGY using #askEnergy. In addition to Secretary Chu, various representatives from across the U.S. solar energy industry were also on the panel of discussion: Jeffery Halsey from Broward County (Broward County of Florida’s Director of Pollution Prevention, Remediation, and Air Quality division), Jeff Allen of Solar Junction‘s Vice President of Business Development, and Joe Desmond, Senior Vice President at Bright Source Energy. Video below:

Jeffery Halsy shared that homeowners from his community, due to their participation in the SunShot Initiataive’s Rooftop Solar Challenge,  were able to save time and money on installations by addressing the soft costs (including permitting, interconnection, and inspection requirements accounting for as much as 40% of the total cost of a single solar installation).  With preapproved design plans,Broward County residents are now able to get a solar energy system permit online in just half an hour, saving both time and money. Jeff Allen shared insight on how Solar Junction shattered an existing technical barrier with its commericia-ready SJ3 multijunction solar cell this year. Below, on the left, a graph of Bandgap vs. Max. Efficiency shows the Shockley-Queisser limit for efficiency of a single junction solar cell. It is essentially impossible for single-junction solar cell, under unconcentrated sunlight, to have more than 34% efficiency. Multijunction cell, however, can exceed that limit. The chart on the right below indicates various solar cell efficiencies researched and presented by NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory). The SJ3 multijunction solar cell, with its concentrating PV cell, using a focused lens to magnify light to 418 times the intensity of the sun, was able to set a new world record of 43.5% for solar cell conversion efficiency.

NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory)’s Best Research-Cell Efficiencies

Shockley-Queisser limit for the efficiency of a single junction solar cell. It is essentially impossible for a single-junction solar cell, under unconcentrated sunlight, to have more than ~34% efficiency. A multijunction cell, however, can exceed that limit.

Joe Demond talked about Ivanpah Solar Generating  Complex in California’s Mojave Desert;this utility-scale solar installation is the world’s largest solar thermal power plant under construction. Supported by an Energy Department loan guarantee, this project using mirrors to focus the power of the sun on solar receivers (through high temperature high pressure steam to turn the turbines) and is expected to generate enough electricity to power about 140,000 homes annually.  Bright Source hired over 2,300 workers to complete this project’s construction and installation phase. Furthermore, majority of this project’s supply chain comes from more than 17 states (such as Michigan-based Guardian Industries that supplied 160,000 of its EcoGuard Solar Boost mirrors).

View of Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System from Yates Well Road, The Clark Mountain Range can be seen in the distance.

Evidently, SunShot Initiative has already accomplished a great deal in reducing the soft costs, in developing new approach in technological advancement, and improvement of old way of doing things to utility-scale. It will continue its aim in reducing the cost of solar energy to be competitive with any other form of energy, without the need of subsidy. The future looks bright for solar industry. The potential of reaching below $1/watt is within reach;cost of solar will be comparable to the new cost estimate of energy from natural gas within 10 years, without any need of subsidy.  As Secretary Chu indicated, “Without any subsidy, solar energy will be able to hold its own with any other form of energy. This is our SunShot! We’re going further than reaching the moon. We’re reaching for the Sun!”This is very exciting! It is so palpable that all solar enthusiasts can feel the energy soaring…now we need to spread this good news so to speed up the process of reaching that clean, healthy and war-free Clean Energy World.  Earthlings, get ready to learn more about Solar Energy so we can all apply ourselves in this Solar Future! Thank you, Secretary Chu, for making SunShot Initiative a reality!

~have a bright and sunny day~

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Any of your comments/suggestions/questions will be welcomed at


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