What do a synagogue, a dance center, and 500 strangers in 13 countries have in common? The answer might surprise you.
Andreas Karelas is the 2013 Audubon Toyota Together Green Conservation Leadership Fellow. He has ten years of experience in environmental & renewable energy experience and is now the Founder and Executive Director of RE-volv, a non-profit that raises capital & lends to communities to install renewable energy systems.
Food For Thought & Conversation
- “If we only focus on the negative aspects of climate change, we will not get going or take action in the way we need to in order to address the problem.” Agree, disagree? Please elaborate.
- Do you have solar on your house? If so, please share your experience. If not, please share the roadblocks you see in solarizing your home.
- RE-volv focuses on raising funds for community organizations to both assist them in reducing their costs of operation and to raise the visibility of solar energy. One of their projects, Harbor House Community Center in Oakland, CA, will save 39% on electric costs by being solar! If you were going to solarize community projects in your community like Re-Volv, which organizations would you choose and why?
- Utility companies vary in how they work with people in their city to incentivize or compensate for solar or alternative energy usage. How does it work in your community?
- Several states, mostly in the Southeast, have tons of sun but rules to keep people from harnessing its power. While the precise rules vary from state to state, one explanation is the same: opposition from utilities grown nervous by the rapid encroachment of solar firms on their business.For example, The business models that have made solar systems financially viable for millions of homeowners in California, New England and elsewhere around the country are largely illegal in Florida, Virginia, South Carolina and some other Southern states. Companies that pioneered the industry, such as SolarCity Corp. and Sunrun Inc., do not even attempt to do business there.No Solar Allowed
- What are the policies and experience in your state? If your state is limiting the use and spread of solar, what can you do to change that?
- Average installed residential and commercial photovoltaic system prices in California have fallen by 10% in the last year. National prices have also dropped steadily — by 8% from last year and 39% from 2010. Share information about your solar experiences and what solar financing policies and/or companies that you are familiar with.
- Investing in RE-volv’s Seeds’ funding program will make RE-volv and its good work sustainable over time. Would you be interested in doing that or starting something similar in your community?
- RE–volv just launched a new program to empower college students to take action on climate change. Find out more at www.RE-volv.org
- Invite friends, colleagues or community members to view this video with you and host a conversation.