Posts Tagged ‘Florida’

3 September

Duke Energy Is Shifting From Nuclear To Solar!

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Below is a re-post from our sister publication, Windermere Sun.

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Thumb Up-1 (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Solar Panels (photo by Neville Mecallef, presented at WindermereSun.com)

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

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What fantastic news for solar enthusiasts, climate scientists, and environmentalists! On Tuesday of this week, Duke Energy of Florida announced a settlement with Florida’s Public Service Commission (PSC), equivalent to other states’ Public Utility Commission (PUC), to stop plans to build a nuclear power plant in western Florida. The utility, with the blessing from PSC, will instead invest $6 billion in solar panels, grid-tied batteries, grid modernization projects, and electric vehicle charging stations. This new investment plan will involve the installation of 700 MW of solar capacity over four year period in the western Florida region.

Duke Energy Florida may not have started building the Levy nuclear power plant, but it did have plans to order two AP1000 reactors from Westinghouse. But now, with the dramatic decrease in cost of solar and increase in battery storage technology, Florida utility concluded that it is much more cost effective to invest in solar rather than nuclear. Last week, Duke told its PSC that it would have to increase rates by more than 8% due to increased fossil fuel (coal and natural gas) costs. But with the new investment plan directing the utility toward solar and storage, that rate hike will be  4.6% instead of 8%.


 


Even though the preparatory expenditure on Levy are now sunk costs, this new plan will save residential customers future nuclear related rate increases. Customers will see a cost reduction of $2.50 per MWh (megawatt-hour) through the removal of unrecovered Levy Nuclear Project costs, according to the utility. The 700 MW of solar may not cover the 2.2 GW (gigawatt) capacity of the Levy plant, but it does indicate the dramatic shift from nuclear power to more solar power.

Duke Energy of Florida serves 1.8 million Floridians and had been relying heavily on natural gas. This week Duke said it wants to raise its solar power capacity to 8% generating power in the next four years.

The parent company of Duke Energy Florida, Duke Energy, also pulled the plug on another planned nuclear power plant in North Carolina last week, according to GreenTechMedia. With continuing drop in solar cost and  improved battery storage technology, it is conceivable that Duke would choose the best option of increasing solar for its customers.


It is a turning point in the history of energy use, when utility and PSC are able to be weaned from  nuclear and move onto solar. Thanks to those who have worked tirelessly in researching, developing, and improving battery storage technology. For this is necessary in order for solar to be promoted from intermittent to reliable source of power.

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

~have a bright and sunny day~

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

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22 August

Total Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

This is a repost from one of our sister publications, Windermere Sun.

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You can watch the Total Solar Eclipse Event from: https://www.nasa.gov/eclipselive/#NASA+TV+Public+Channel

Total Solar Eclipse observed from USA on Aug. 21, 2017, with the help of NASA (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Total Solar Eclipse (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Map of the Total Solar Eclipse of Aug. 21, 2017 (Attribution: Wolfgang Strickling, presented at WindermereSun.com)

Chart for Solar Eclipse (Attribution: Fred Espenak of NASA GSFC, presented at WindermereSun.com)

Diamond Ring of the Total Solar Eclipse, last bit of corona ring and last flash of the sun give us the “diamond ring” effect (presented at WindermereSun.com , with the help of NASA)

Diamond Ring of the Total Solar Eclipse, last bit of corona ring and last flash of the sun give us the “diamond ring” effect (presented at WindermereSun.com , with the help of NASA)

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)
(Please click on red links & note magenta)

You can watch the Total Solar Eclipse Event from: https://www.nasa.gov/eclipselive/#NASA+TV+Public+Channel

Did you drive or fly to one of the cities along the route for observing total solar eclipse? Did you avoid the crowd by watching live stream for the event, or were you simply oblivious of the Total Solar Eclipse event today? There were so many people trying to reserve for flights to one of the cities along the route of total solar eclipse above that a coach plane ticket between DFW (Dallas Fort Worth) to Nashville costed $6000 last week. Hotel rooms were quickly running out that all of the hotel rooms along this route were fully booked last week that the last single room was going for $6000 for 4 nights at Oregon State University area. This is the only reason that I am reporting the event from Florida rather than Oregon State University today. The next total solar eclipse in the USA will be on April 8, 2024, only 2422 days away. The next total solar eclipse outside of the USA will be on July 2, 2019, with the path of totality running through South American countries such as Chile and Argentina, according to NASA. If you missed today’s event, perhaps you’ll be interested in one of these two future events.

Historically, some of the total solar eclipses at:

  • October 22, 2134 B.C.: one of the earliest recorded solar eclipse appeared in Shu Ching, an ancient Chinese book of documents. The ancient Chinese believed that a solar eclipse was the result of a large dragon eating the Sun. It was the job of two royal astronomers Hsi and Ho to predict such events so that people could prepare bows and arrows to fend off the dragon. But Hsi and Ho shirked their duties and got drunk, so they were beheaded by the emperor.
  • May 28, 585 B.C.: A total solar eclipse brought about an unexpected ceasefire between two warring nations, the Lydians and the Medes, fighting for control of Anatolia (modern day Turkey) for five years, according to ancient Greek historian Herodotus. During the Battle of Halys, aka Battle of the Eclipse, the sky suddenly turned dark as the sun disappeared behind the moon. Interpreting this inexplicable phenomenon as a sign that the gods wanted the conflict to end, the soldiers put down their weapon and negotiated for a truce.
  • 29-32 A.D.: Christian gospels say the sky darkened after the crucifixion of Jesus. It is possible that the event may have coincided with a solar eclipse. Historians have tried to pinpoint the death of Jesus, using astronomical records of solar eclipse in the years 29 C.E. or 32 C.E.
  • May 5, 840: Louis the Pious, the third son of Charlemagne, inherited a vast empire in what is modern day France after his father died in 814. His reign was marked by dynastic crisis and rivalry between his sons. Being a deeply religious man, Louis became terrified of punishment from God after witnessing a solar eclipse. According to the legend, he died of fright shortly afterward.
  • May 29, 1919: Sir Arthur Eddington tested Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity during a total solar eclipse. Einstein had theorized that massive objects caused distortions in space and time. Eddington confirmed that starlight bent around the sun by measuring the position of certain stars relative to the eclipse.

 

A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon completely covers the Sun’s disk, as seen in this 1999 solar eclipse. Solar prominences can be seen along the limb (in red) as well as extensive coronal filaments.(Photo Attribution: I, Luc Viatour, Presented at: WindermereSun.com)

 

Chart for Solar Eclipse (Attribution: Eclipse Predictions by Fred Espenak, NASA’s GSFC, Presented at: WindermereSun.com)

Map of Solar Eclipse (presented at: WindermereSun.com)

Map of the Solar Eclipse 2017 USA (created with Eclipse 2017 Android App, Geodata from OpenStreetMap (Attribution: Wolfganag Strickling, Presented at: WindermereSun.com)

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

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How many of you had “observing a Total Solar Eclipse” on your bucket list? It was in totality only within a band across the entire contiguous United States ( covering: Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina). The last time a total solar eclipse was visible across the entire contiguous United States was during the June 8, 1918 eclipse.

Map of the Solar Eclipse 2017 USA (created with Eclipse 2017 Android App, Geodata from OpenStreetMap (Attribution: Wolfganag Strickling, Presented at: WindermereSun.com), covering: Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina

A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon’s apparent diameter is larger than the Sun’s, blocking all direct sunlight, turning day into darkness. Totality occurs in a narrow path across Earth’s surface, with the partial solar eclipse visible over a surrounding region thousands of kilometers wide. This eclipse is the 22nd of the 77 members of Saros series 145, which also produced the solar eclipse of August 11, 1999. Members of this series are increasing in duration. The longest eclipse in this series will occur on June 25, 2522 and last for 7 minutes and 12 seconds.

The total eclipse will have a magnitude of 1.0306 and will be visible from a narrow corridor through the United States. It will be first seen from land in the US shortly after 10:15 a.m. PDT at Oregon’s Pacific coast, and then it will progress eastward through Salem, OR, Casper, WY, Lincoln, NE, Kansas City, Nashville, TN, Columbia, SC, and finally Charleston, SC. Total Solar Eclipse will darken skies all the way from Oregon to South Carolina, along a stretch of land about 70 miles (113 kilometers) wide. People who descend upon this “path of totality” for the big event are in for an unforgettable experience. A partial eclipse will be seen for a greater time period, beginning shortly after 9:00 a.m. PDT along the Pacific Coast of Oregon.

The longest duration of totality will be 2 minutes 41.6 seconds at about 37°35′0″N 89°7′0″W in Giant City State Park, just south of Carbondale, Illinois, and the greatest extent (width) will be at 36°58′0″N 87°40′18″W near the village of Cerulean, Kentucky, located in between Hopkinsville, KY and Princeton, KY. This will be the first total solar eclipse visible from the Southeastern United States since the solar eclipse of March 7, 1970, which was only visible from Florida.

 

 


A partial solar eclipse will be seen from the much broader path of the Moon‘s penumbra, including all of North America, northern South America, Western Europe, and some of Africa.

The August 2017 eclipse will be the first with a path of totality crossing the US’s Pacific coast and Atlantic coast since 1918. Also, its path of totality makes landfall exclusively within the United States, making it the first such eclipse since the country’s independence in 1776. (The path of totality of the eclipse of June 13, 1257, was the last to make landfall exclusively on lands currently part of the US.

If you are interested in observing this event (total Solar Eclipse), below, in italics, is excerpt from “Eye Safety During Solar Eclipses” from NASA:

The Sun can be viewed safely with the naked eye only during the few brief seconds or minutes of a total solar eclipse. Partial eclipses, annular eclipses, and the partial phases of total eclipses are never safe to watch without taking special precautions. Even when 99% of the Sun’s surface is obscured during the partial phases of a total eclipse, the remaining photospheric crescent is intensely bright and cannot be viewed safely without eye protection [Chou, 1981; Marsh, 1982]. Do not attempt to observe the partial or annular phases of any eclipse with the naked eye. Failure to use appropriate filtration may result in permanent eye damage or blindness!

Generally, the same equipment, techniques and precautions used to observe the Sun outside of eclipse are required for annular eclipses and the partial phases of total eclipses [Reynolds & Sweetsir, 1995; Pasachoff & Covington, 1993; Pasachoff & Menzel, 1992; Sherrod, 1981]. The safest and most inexpensive of these methods is by projection, in which a pinhole or small opening is used to cast the image of the Sun on a screen placed a half-meter or more beyond the opening. Projected images of the Sun may even be seen on the ground in the small openings created by interlacing fingers, or in the dappled sunlight beneath a leafy tree. Binoculars can also be used to project a magnified image of the Sun on a white card, but you must avoid the temptation of using these instruments for direct viewing.

The Sun can be viewed directly only when using filters specifically designed for this purpose. Such filters usually have a thin layer of aluminum, chromium or silver deposited on their surfaces that attenuates ultraviolet, visible, and infrared energy. One of the most widely available filters for safe solar viewing is a number 14 welder’s glass, available through welding supply outlets. More recently, aluminized mylar has become a popular, inexpensive alternative. Mylar can easily be cut with scissors and adapted to any kind of box or viewing device. A number of sources for solar filters are listed below. No filter is safe to use with any optical device (i.e. – telescope, binoculars, etc.) unless it has been specifically designed for that purpose. Experienced amateur and professional astronomers may also use one or two layers of completely exposed and fully developed black-and-white film, provided the film contains a silver emulsion. Since all developed color films lack silver, they are always unsafe for use in solar viewing.

Unsafe filters include color film, some non-silver black and white film, medical x-ray films with images on them, smoked glass, photographic neutral density filters and polarizing filters. Solar filters designed to thread into eyepieces which are often sold with inexpensive telescopes are also dangerous. They should not be used for viewing the Sun at any time since they often crack from overheating. Do not experiment with other filters unless you are certain that they are safe. Damage to the eyes comes predominantly from invisible infrared wavelengths. The fact that the Sun appears dark in a filter or that you feel no discomfort does not guarantee that your eyes are safe. Avoid all unnecessary risks. Your local planetarium or amateur astronomy club is a good source for additional information.

In spite of these precautions, the total phase (and only the total phase) of an eclipse can and should be viewed without filters. It is crucial that you know when to take off and put back on your glasses; see Eye safety during a total solar eclipse

Two spectacular events signal the boundaries of totality: appearance of the diamond effect and Baily’s beads.

Diamond Ring of the Total Solar Eclipse, last bit of corona ring and last flash of the sun give us the “diamond ring” effect (presented at WindermereSun.com , with the help of NASA)

  • Diamond Ring: it is a product of the final moments of the pre-totality partial phases and their post-totality resurgence.
  • Baily’s Beads: Sir Edmund Halley is credited with observing the first Baily’s beads during the eclipse of April 22, 1715. They were also observed by Maclaurin from Edinburgh during the annular eclipse of March 1, 1737 and by Williams from Revolutionary War America on October 27, 1780 from just outside of the totality. But it was Francis Baily’s widely disseminated description of the phenomenon during the annular eclipse of May 15, 1836, that led to their bearing his name thereafter. It was explained by Baily that shortly before second contact of a total eclipse, the opposing horns of the slender crescent sun begin to converge on one another. At the same time, the tenuous solar atmosphere becomes visible against the darkening sky, shining out around the edge of the moon where the sun has already been covered. The combination of this “ring” of light and the single brilliant “diamond” of sunlight where the horns are converging creates a most striking appearance, the diamond ring. The effect lasts for a very short time. Soon the horns of the solar crescent close completely, and the diamond ring begins to break up, to be replaced by an array of brilliant beads of sunlight caused by the sun shining through valleys and depressions on the moon’s leading limb.

 

Total Eclipse Viewing Events (source: wkipedia), below:

Oregon

Idaho

Wyoming

  • Casper, Wyoming – The Astronomical League, an alliance of amateur astronomy clubs, will hold its annual Astrocon conference, and there will be other public events, called Wyoming Eclipse Festival 2017.

Nebraska

Missouri

Illinois

Kentucky

Tennessee

North Carolina

Georgia

  • Rabun County, Georgia – Multiple events occur across Rabun County, including the OutASight Total Solar Eclipse Viewing Party with astronomers from Georgia State University. Other events will be held at Tallulah Gorge State Park, Black Rock Mountain State Park, and other locations in the county.

South Carolina

Viewing from outside the United States

Canada

A partial eclipse will be visible across the width of Canada, ranging from 89% in Victoria, British Columbia to 11% in Resolute, Nunavut.

Central America, Mexico, Caribbean islands

A partial eclipse will be visible from Central America, Mexico, and the Caribbean islands.

Europe

The boundaries of the sunset partial eclipse in Western Europe. Calculation with EclipseDroid with atmospheric refraction.

In northwestern Europe, the eclipse will only be visible as a partial eclipse, in the evening or at sunset. Only Iceland, Ireland and Scotland will see the eclipse from beginning to end; in the rest of the UK, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain and Portugal, sunset will occur before the end of the eclipse. In Germany, the beginning of the eclipse will be potentially visible just at sunset only in the extreme northwest of the country. In all regions east of the orange line in the map, the eclipse will be invisible.

Online Viewing Events

 

Gathered, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
~have a bright and sunny day~

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

www.facebook.com/sunisthefuture

www.pinterest.com/sunisthefuture

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2 December

Let’s Help Marshall Pitcairn to Spread More Sunshine

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

This is a repost from one of our sister publication, Windermere Sun, below:

Sun Rays (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Sun Rays (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Sunshine Through Globe of Epcot (credit: Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Sunshine Through Globe of Epcot (credit: Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Bethel New Life-Lake Pulaski Commercial Center, 24.6 kW roof system

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)
 

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Here is an update of a very meaningful project/campaign of one of our own Central Floridians, Marshall Pitcairn, owner of ZEAL (Zero Energy Apartment Living) apartment. Mr. Pitcairn is a Renaissance Man with background and experience in both computer science and entertainment. He is a single parent, juggling his time between parenthood and starting up a project initially near UCF campus and hopefully to spread to rest of the Florida and USA, during our transition toward the Clean and Renewable Future. The idea of reducing the cost of utility bills as much as possible for apartment tenants (via solar energy) is brilliant and definitely the right direction for our renewable future.

“ZEAL Apartments are fully powered by renewable energy, with enough to cover everybody’s normal usage for today, so you don’t have to skimp on your amenities,” Marshall Pitcairn comments, “The electricity is included in the rent, and the rent will be comparable to other apartments in the area. ZEAL Apartments offer to hassle sustainable living to renters and a better ROI for investors.”

Marshall Pitcairn has begun his Indiegogo campaign on Nov.18, 2016 for a duration of 30 days, at this location: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/zeal-apartments-solar#/


This Indiegogo campaign will help to raise the funds for starting building the first ZEAL Apartments. Any of solar supporters, clean/renewable energy enthusiasts, or community supporters, this is your chance to help to participate in a meaningful project in spreading the sunshine. In exchange for pledging to the project, backers can gain access to a variety of rewards, including a spot on the waiting list to live in a ZEAL Apartment for $20, a spot on the waiting list and the choice of a ZEAL logo t-shirt, coffee mug, or tote bag, and more. Backers can also pledge $100 for a spot on the waiting list and personal thank you phone or skype call from the owner of the ZEAL Apartments. To find out more about this campaign or ZEAL Apartments, please contact Marshall Pitcairn via: 321-960-2630, marshall@zealapartments.com .

Don’t forget to help spread the location of Marshall’s Indiegogo campaign: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/zeal-apartments-solar#/

We Need Fair Value of Solar

 

~Let’s Help One Another~

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Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at info.WindermereSun@gmail.com

Photographed, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
More about the community at www.WindermereSun.com

~Have A Bright and Sunny Day~

Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

www.facebook.com/sunisthefuture

www.pinterest.com/sunisthefuture

www.youtube.com/user/sunisthefuture

www.cafepress.com/sunisthefuture

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Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
info.WindermereSun@gmail.com
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http://www.facebook.com/WindermereSun
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Twitter: @WindermereSun

 

 

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4 September

Sun Is The Future Team At Kiva Ranked 4th at Kiva This Week

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva ranked 4th place in month of

Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva ranked 4th place on Sep. 3, 2016


(Please click on red links & note magenta)

Hurray! Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva ranked 4th place today, after: Hewlett Packard Enterprise, The Mindful Bunch, and Carnegie Mellon University teams! Thank you, team members, for a job well done! With Amendment 4 being passed in Florida and Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva placing in top ten teams at Kiva, it is a Fantastic Week for Solar future!

JOIN  US! At Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva

We loan because…
We want to spread more sunshine throughout the planet earth by increasing opportunities that would make this planet earth a better place to live. This is accomplished via micro-finance. With as little as $25, any one is able to participate in helping another entrepreneur on planet Earth via the platform of Kiva.
About us

We are hopeful and optimistic that sun, water, wind, and geothermal energy will lead us into a world free from pollution and war. Let us earthlings look for ways to make this a reality! Sunisthefuture Team supports entrepreneurs from USA and various developing nations in starting/maintaining businesses in solar energy/renewable energy/recycling/energy efficiency.

Click on “Loans” and “Members” at Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva web site to see which small businesses we’ve supported and who are members on Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva.

To see what Green Loans are currently needing help to be funded, click on “Lend” on top of the page, then select (placing a check mark inside the box next to…) for “Green” under ATTRIBUTES in the left hand margin. At the end of the transaction, be sure to click on “complete order” in order to complete the transaction. Then check to see if the number of loans has been correctly added for your individual profile and for the team you’ve attributed the loan to.

~have a bright and sunny day~

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

www.facebook.com/sunisthefuture

www.pinterest.com/sunisthefuture

www.youtube.com/user/sunisthefuture

www.cafepress.com/sunisthefuture

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1 September

Yes, Amendment 4 Passed In State of Florida! Brighter Solar Future For State of Florida!

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Below is a repost from our sister publication, Windermere Sun.

Firework, by Saifon Narongrat (brought to you by WindermereSun.com)

Firework, by Saifon Narongrat (brought to you by WindermereSun.com)

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

(Please click on red links & note magenta)

The votes are in. Amendment 4 passed with the vast majority of Floridians across the state voting YES to support solar power in the Sunshine State (at 73% vs. 27% margin, the measure needs 60% to win)! The victory would not have been possible without the effort of  thousands of volunteers and organizations throughout Florida that worked tirelessly to get the necessary votes. Thank you for all of your dedication and support.

This is a huge step to usher the Sunshine State from being blocked

Sun blocked by clouds, by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Sun blocked by clouds, by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker

into the Solar Energy Age and on the way in becoming a leader in the solar industry!

Sun is shining, no longer blocked by clouds, by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Sun is shining, no longer blocked by clouds, by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Amendment 4 will help Floridians to lower energy costs by reducing the tax burden for solar equipment. With lower taxes for homeowners and businesses, more solar energy development is anticipated for Floridians to lock in energy savings, create jobs, spur economic development, and bring much needed diversity to Florida’s energy mix!

Solar Panels Reflecting the Sky, by Debbie Mous, brought to you by WindermereSun.com

Solar Panels Reflecting the Sky, by Debbie Mous, brought to you by WindermereSun.com

Solar Growth by huntr004, brought to you by WindermereSun.com

Solar Growth by huntr004, brought to you by WindermereSun.com

This is just the beginning of opening up Solar in the Sunshine State! If you are interested in supporting good solar policy and defend against anti-solar attacks in the future, click here to request a vote-by-mail ballot this November-become a Florida Solar Voter today.

Solar Panels by Neville Mecallef, brought to you by WindermereSun.com

Solar Panels by Neville Mecallef, brought to you by WindermereSun.com

Now, Floridians, please remember to Vote “No” for Amendment 1 on November 8 because it’s  a Trojan Horse that the utility companies are using to block further solar development. More on Amendment 1 in a future post.

 


~have a bright and sunny day~
Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at info.WindermereSun@gmail.com

Photographed, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
More about the community at www.WindermereSun.com
 

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

www.facebook.com/sunisthefuture

www.pinterest.com/sunisthefuture

www.youtube.com/user/sunisthefuture

www.cafepress.com/sunisthefuture

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25 August

Support Solar in Florida By Voting YES on Amendment 4 in August Primary

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Dear Friends/Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Vote YES on Amendment 4 in August Primary

Vote YES on Amendment 4 in August Primary

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

(Please click on red links & note magenta)

Dear Fellow Floridians, for more information about Early Voting, please refer to our Previous Post .  If you have any questions about voting, please call the Election Protection hotline at: 1-866-OUR-VOTE (1-866-687-8683) or 1-888-VE-Y-VOTA (1-888-839-8682-Espanol.) Assistance is available in English or Spanish.

We, the Floridians, have been blessed with generous sunshine, residing in the SunShine State. In the August Primary, Floridian voters will have the opportunity to lower energy cost and boost future solar energy production in the Sunshine State by voting YES for Amendment 4 on the Primary Ballot. Amendment 4 will amend Florida’s Constitution to exempt the value of solar panels and other renewable energy equipment from both the tangible personal property tax and the real property tax. In order for Amendment 4 to become law, it must be approved by YES vote from at least 60% of the Floridian voters for the August 30 Primary Ballot.

The exact wording of Amendment 4, below (in italics):

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

No.4, CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT ARTICLE VII, SECTION 3 AND 4 ARTICLE XII, SECTION 34

Solar Devices or Renewable Energy Source Devices;Exemption from Certain Taxation and Assessment.

Proposing an amendment to the State Constitution to authorize the Legislature, by general law, to exempt from ad valorem taxation the assessed value of solar or renewable energy source devices subject to tangible personal property tax, and to authorize the Legislature, by general law, to prohibit consideration of such devices in assessing the value of real property for ad valorem taxation purposes. This amendment takes effect January 1, 2018, and expires on December 31, 2037.


——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

Firstly, ad valorem simply means in proportion to the value. So, Amendment 4 is proposing to remove the tax based on the value of the solar panels/renewable energy source devices and also to prevent the inclusion of these devices when assessing the value of the real property. This amendment, if passed, will enable solar energy in Florida to be much more affordable for every one (commercial, as well as residential), help to increase the number of solar jobs and further solar development in Florida tremendously , and at no cost to Florida’s taxpayers because these taxes are not being collected now.

  • As we come to the final stage of  fossil fuel period in history…
  • as more natural disasters (such as Hurricane Sandy  and Louisiana flood) occur…
  • and increasing suicide rate of farmers from different parts of the world (India, Australia, etc.) resulting from extreme weather conditions due to increased rate of climate change….
  • and the cost of solar and renewable energy and battery storage technology continues to decrease

It is our moral imperative to do everything possible in slowing down the current rate of climate change. It is also our sense of practicality that should direct us quickly toward transition into solar and renewable energy. The great irony in life is that:  those of us in the developed nations have been  contributing far more than those in developing nations to this dramatic increased rate of climate change. But when the chips are down, it is those in the developing nations and the poorest who will be suffering more. There is something terribly wrong with this picture. It would have been far more impactful if Amendment 4 were passed more than a decade ago. Voting YES for Amendment 4 now is the least that we can and should do. In addition to installing solar, I believe we should also be thinking of switching to electrical vehicles, recycle more, bike and walk more, eat less meat, etc. It is economical/practical and ethical to encourage the growth of solar and renewable energy in the Sunshine State!

Keep in mind that there are three ways to vote:

  1. At the polls on August 30, 2016
  2. Early Voting between August 15-August 28 or August 20-August 27 or……., depending on which county  you are in.
  3. By mail starting from July 26, 2016 and be sure your mail-in ballot is received by 7:00 pm on election day, August 30, 2016. So, those of you who are planning on mailing in your ballot, be sure you do so ASAP.

For those of you interested in clean energy future, you may like to know that Florida Solar Voter is a project of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy dedicated to providing all Florida voters an easy way to sign up to vote by mail.  Please feel free to contact Southern Alliance For Clean Energy via 813-252-1751  or  www.CleanEnergy.org .You may also be interested in visiting Floridians For Solar Choice.

Vote YES on Amendment 4 in August Primary

Vote YES on Amendment 4 in August Primary


~have a bright and sunny day~
Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Photographed, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker
More about the community at www.WindermereSun.com
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3 March

Our Renewable Energy Future

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Solar Decathlon 2013 of U.S. Department of Energy-Collegiate teams at Orange County Great Park, Irvine, CA

Solar Decathlon 2013 of U.S. Department of Energy-Collegiate teams at Orange County Great Park, Irvine, CA

 (Please click on red links & note magenta)

Some of you have written me and asked why is it that I am not posting as frequently as I used to. To this, I respond: my dear solar friends, because I believe Solar Tsunami is unstoppable now. When I started posting at www.sunisthefuture.net back in 2011, the solar age was approaching the inflection point, a region on the curve when it was much more likely to be stifled by unfavorable policies. But now, we have gone way beyond that point of inflection. Solar industry has become an industry of over $100 billion and cannot be stopped. Efforts or policy such as what occurred in Nevada in placing that extra $40/month of fixed fees on solar installations may slow down the distributed solar installations in the short term, but it is going to drive Nevada Energy toward being unprofitable at a much faster pace in the long run….for this would speed up the process of consumers wanting to go off grid rather than trying to stay on the grid. As for states that are progressing slower, such as my beloved Florida, solar installations will continue to increase simply for the fact that cost of solar has dropped so much within the past five years and battery technology continues to advance. If the utility companies are able to learn and adapt to becoming more bank-like/energy service manager rather than energy generator establishment and consumers take on more of a prosumer role, the transition may be much smoother. So, I hope those involved in the energy industry will keep an open mind while listening to some words of wisdom from Karl Rabago and Toby Couture below:

 

I apologize if you have already seen these two videos above….for I believe these two experts (Karl Rabago and Toby Couture) have thoroughly understood and presented our next phase of energy profile.

~have a bright and sunny day~
Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, video-recorded, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

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www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

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29 February

Florida’s Sunshine To Be Caught By Mickey’s Solar Farm & Floridians For Solar Choice

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Below is a repost from our sister online publication, Windermere Sun:

Disney Solar Farm at the Reedy Creek Improvement District

Disney Solar Farm at the Reedy Creek Improvement District

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

(Please click on red links & note magenta)

Yes, this is definitely a project both Walt Disney himself

Walt Disney stamp public domain

Walt Disney stamp

Walt_Disney_Snow_white_1937_trailer_screenshot_public domain

Walt_Disney_Snow_white_1937_trailer_screenshot

and Mickey

Mickey Mouse (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Mickey Mouse (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

would have approved! For those of you who are not aware of the project, it is located in the Reedy Creek Improvement District (the Disney controlled taxing district) occupying about 20 acres near World Drive and Epcot Center Drive at Walt Disney World Resort in the shape of Mickey Mouse. Mashable posted photos received from satellite imaging from NearMap of the installation, below.

Disney Solar Farm at the Reedy Creek Improvement District

Disney Solar Farm at the Reedy Creek Improvement District (image: nearmap)

This Mickey shaped solar farm is built and operated by Duke Energy, composed of 48,000 solar PV panels and five-megawatt. Last year, Duke Energy of Florida announced that it would build up to 500 megawatts of solar by 2024 as part of a multiyear plan.

The Reedy Creek Improvement District Board of Supervisors voted to accept a 15-year power-purchase agreement with Duke Energy Florida Solar Solutions LLC, a subsidiary of Duke Energy Florida, to purchase solar energy from the facility. Administrator of Reedy Creek Improvement District, Bill Warren, said, “The use of solar energy builds on our commitment to protect the environment and is another step toward realizing our long-term sustainability goals.”

“We are committed to working with customers to expand their use of renewable energy,” said Alex Glenn, president of Duke Energy Florida. “This opportunity to serve the Reedy Creek Improvement District is another example of how we are meeting our customers’ interests in renewable energy, while bringing more solar choices to Florida.”

Duke Energy has also funded more than $8 million in solar PV system installations at approximately 50 K-12 schools and universities in Florida to generate electricity and help foster renewable energy education.

As for bringing more solar choices to Florida, please keep in mind that Floridians For Solar Choice is still alive, awaiting for more signatures in order to provide Floridians with more solar choices, allowing third party power providers such as Solar City that would be able to help Florida residents to take part in generating and using solar power

Florida sunshine (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Florida sunshine (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

without having to worry about installation cost. Be sure to sign and send in the petition in the red link above.

While we’re on the topic of Mickey shaped solar farm, did you know that Disney is fond of placing hidden Mickeys throughout its theme parks, movies, and other properties. More than 1000 hidden Mickeys have been recorded. Fans estimate that more are waiting to be discovered. I have actually seen, via Google Maps, a hidden Mickey forest in Orlando. Do you know where it is?

~have a bright and sunny day~

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at info.WindermereSun@gmail.com or sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, photographed, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
More about the community at www.WindermereSun.com
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

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www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

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18 February

What To Do For Floridians To Go Solar

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

(Please click on red links & note magenta)

I am getting more messages from people in different parts of the state of Florida wanting to go solar, but do not know how. So, I’d like to repost part of an earlier post to help forage the path, below:

Here are some points to consider in order to help you to take part in solar energy use

I.   I want you to be aware of all the incentive programs (to save money) for installing renewable/solar energy & energy efficiency in USA and FL.

II.  Find a local installer to receive an estimate of what type or how big of a solar system is suitable for your particular needs. All solar installers I’ve come across so far would be able to provide such an estimate free of charge. If you live in Tampa, FL area, mention that you’ve found out about SEM and solar co-op from Windermere Sun, then you can get a discount with SEM. For those in other parts of the Florida, mention Windermere Sun first before negotiating for a discount.

*Keep in mind that if you can get your money back:

  1. in 7 years by installing solar system, that is equivalent to about 14.3% rate of return (1/7 = 0.1428)
  2. in 8 years by installing solar system, that is equivalent to about 12.5% rate of return (1/8 = 0.125)
  3. in 9 years by installing solar system, that is equivalent to about 11.1% rate of return (1/9 =0.111…)

The stock market cannot guarantee such a good deal. It’s a no brainer! Any one who plans on being alive in 10+ years would do well to install solar.

III. To help reduce the cost of installing solar panels (perhaps by as much as 20%), you may want to consider joining or starting a Solar Co-Op.  In Central Florida, there is a West Orange Solar Co-Op and an Orlando and Winter Park Solar Co-Op that is also open to homeowners East of I-4. In a recent Central Florida Solar Advocates meetup meeting that took place on Dec. 2, 2015, these are discussed, below:

Here are the steps for the Solar Co-op Process, suggested by the Central Florida Solar Advocates:

  1. Attend an Information Session:  Learn about going solar and how solar co-ops work.
  2. Join Your Local Co-op: Sign up on line! Any one can participate. The only requirement is that you want to go solar!
  3. Get a Roof Review: Your roof is reviewed via satellite to make sure it’s a good fit for solar energy.
  4. Solicit Local Bids: Once the co-op has 20-30 members, a request for proposal is created based on co-op members priorities and bids are solicited from installers.
  5. Review Bids as a Group: Co-op members form a selection committee to review bids and select a single installer to complete all of the projects.
  6. Get Individualized Proposal: Homeowner meets with the chosen installer to get an individualized proposal for a solar system for your home. This proposal will reflect the group discount.
  7. Sign an Individualized Contract: Homeowner signs a contract directly with the installer.
  8. Installation: Have your solar panels installed on your home!
  9. Celebrate: Celebrate with the co-op and help start other co-ops in your community!

If you have any questions, please feel free to email: cfsolaradvocates@gmail.com

To learn more about these co-ops or join a solar co-op, visit: www.cfsolaradvocates.org

IV. If you live in an apartment or in a house that is shaded, even though you may not be able to take advantage of the solar energy via your own rooftop, you may still be able to participate in solar energy use via Community Solar Garden/Farm. Check out what’s been accumulated at Sun Is The Future about Start A Community Solar Garden/Farm

Please feel free to contact Paul Spencer of Clean Energy Collective or Joy Hughes of Solar Gardens for the benefit of their experience in developing Community Solar Gardens/Farms.

Community Solar Garden/Farm-(Westmill_Solar_Cooperative_1 Creaive Commons GNU Free Documentation License)

Community Solar Garden/Farm-(Westmill_Solar_Cooperative_1 Creaive Commons GNU Free Documentation License)

Community Solar Garden/Farm of Clean Energy Collective in Cowdery Meadow Community Solar (credit: Sun Is The Future-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Community Solar Garden/Farm of Clean Energy Collective in Cowdery Meadow Community Solar (credit: Sun Is The Future-Susan Sun Nunamaker

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

V. If you need to get a loan or any financial assistance in order to participate in solar energy use, please consider these avenues, below:

  • Obtaining  a loan via Kiva, then contact Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva  by email: sunisthefuture@gmail.com so Sunisthefuture Team at Kiva will help to promote for the funding of this loan.
  • Obtaining a loan via Mosaic, then contact Sun Is The Future by email: sunisthefuture@gmail.com so Sun Is The Future will help to promote for the funding of this loan.
  • Obtaining a grant via one of the crowdfunding platforms, then contact Sun Is The Future by email: sunisthefuture@gmail.com so Sun Is The Future will be able to help promote for your campaign.  Different platforms have different conditions. So be sure to take care in choosing the appropriate ones for you.
  • If you live in Windermere, FL area and is obtaining either a solar loan or a solar grant via any of the avenues above, be sure to contact Windermere Sun by email: info.WindermereSun@gmail.com so Windermere Sun will be able to help promote for your loan or grant.

VI. For those of you who truly have difficulty in affording the installation cost of solar or do not have property suited for solar installation, do not forget the recent victory at the Florida State Supreme Court, explained in this post. There is something you can do to help improve the chance of lowering your future utility bills, by obtaining more signatures to improve the chance of Floridians For Solar Choice ballot .

May you/we all be able to enjoy the warmth and energy of Sunshine for many decades to come….

~Let’s Help One Another~
~have a bright and sunny day~
Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, photographed, video-recorded, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

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18 January

Floridians Are Not Giving Up Sunshine For Sunshine State Yet

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

Sun shines through leaves in Windermere, FL (credit: sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

Sun shines through leaves in Windermere, FL (credit: sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

To help clarify the press release from Floridians For Solar Choice, below, please refer to one of our earlier post (<–click).

For Update & Press Release from Floridians for Solar Choice, please refer to the italics portion of the post, below:

Contact: Floridians for Solar Choice, 754-307-7451, jennifer@flsolarchoice.org

Floridians for Solar Choice Coalition Discusses Future of the Coalition and Opposition to Misleading Utility-Backed Petition

Solar supporters highlight how utilities’ campaign was designed to confuse voters

Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (January 11, 2016) Today, Floridians for Solar Choice joins other parties in filing briefs with Florida’s Supreme Court opposing the utility-backed constitutional amendment, which proposes to maintain Florida’s regulatory status quo for solar energy. Calling the utility-backed solar amendment misleading, solar supporters note the utilities’ proposal was launched only to confuse voters and counter the success of the broadly supported grassroots campaign launched by Floridians for Solar Choice.

“It is a cynical proposal designed to confuse voters. Its ballot language falsely tells voters that the amendment gives people the right to make a solar energy choice, when in fact it gives them nothing more than what they already have under the Florida Constitution’s basic rights and under general law – the ability to own or lease the solar equipment they use to make electricity at their homes and businesses,” said Bill Garner, attorney with Nabors, Giblin & Nickerson, P.A.

The Floridians for Solar Choice coalition acknowledges that the utilities’ multi-million dollar misinformation campaign has succeeded in confusing voters and preventing Solar Choice from gaining a slot on the 2016 ballot. However, the coalition’s goal remains unchanged: to open the solar market in Florida and encourage the development of clean and affordable energy through smart solar policy. As petitions are valid for 24 months from the date of signing, the coalition continues to explore options to qualify for the 2018 ballot and Solar Choice volunteers and partner organizations continue to collect petitions around the state.

“Florida is ranked third for rooftop solar potential by the solar energy industry, and yet remains far behind other states in installed solar because of our utility monopolized environment,” said Tory Perfetti, chairman of Floridians for Solar Choice. “It is unfortunate that Florida continues to treat solar energy differently and continues to maintain barriers to free market growth of this energy source. This coalition and I will keep fighting to provide more choice to the citizens of this great state regarding their energy future.”

Although Florida’s is ranked third in the nation for rooftop solar potential by the Solar Energy Industries Association, there is a dearth of installed solar throughout the Sunshine State. The lack of extensive solar energy systems largely stems from regressive energy policies, many of which are supported by monopoly utilities wary of losing their captive customers in an open energy market.

“My experience on Florida’s Public Service Commission makes it clear that removing regressive energy policies in order to open and more-fully develop the solar market in Florida makes good sense both for Florida’s consumers and for our state’s economy,” said E. Leon Jacobs, Jr., legal counsel to the Florida Solar Energy Industries Association. “The utilities’ claims against the proposed Solar Choice amendment are simply not based in fact.”

Although the utility-backed campaign called Consumers for Smart Solar has described itself as a “diverse coalition of business, civic and faith leaders,” financial filings reveal they are entirely backed by utilities and their front groups. Electric utilities contributed more than half of the $5.9 million collected since last summer, and December’s filing are expected to demonstrate continued utility support.

“This misleading ballot amendment is bad for consumers, bad for the environment, and bad for Florida. That’s why we’re challenging it in court,” said Earthjustice attorney Bradley Marshall.

The affirmation of Solar Choice’s dedication to their goal and their strong opposition to the utility backed proposal are timely given the start of the 2016 legislative session tomorrow, and the coalition remains confident that the voice of the people who want more solar in the Sunshine State will be heard.

“The Floridians for Solar Choice coalition is stronger today than ever before and we remain unwavering in our focus to open the solar market in the Sunshine State,” said Dr. Stephen A. Smith, executive director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. “Yes, the utilities have more money, but their positions are on the wrong side of this issue. Deception and unethical manipulation of Florida’s voters will not win in the end. We trust the Supreme Court will see through the monopoly utilities’ chicanery and deny the false petition from ballot access.”

Below is the video of Floridians For Solar Choice Press Conference that took place on Jan. 11, 2016:

So, essentially the take-away from this post is that there is still more time  ( 754-307-7451, jennifer@flsolarchoice.org). Floridians are not giving up the opportunity for bringing in Sunshine to our Sunshine state!

Gathered, written, photographed, & posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Any suggestions, concerns, questions will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com
Homepage: http://www.sunisthefuture.net

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