The Illinois Solar Energy Association (ISEA) recently held the first of several Solar Socials. This event occurred June 28 at the home of Peter and Sue Gorr of Palatine. The Gorrs converted their home to solar generated electricity 3 years ago using rooftop mounted solar panels. The purpose of these events, which are free and open to the public, is to offer interested individuals an opportunity to see a residential installation and hear from the homeowners about their experience and their results. "I'm always amazed at the lack of understanding of how solar systems operate and the misconceptions about the cost and whether it works in Illinois. So these casual and fun events offer the public, who I find is very interested in this technology, an opportunity to learn what a great choice it can be for the individual homeowner interested in controlling more of how they live and where their money goes." states Mr. Gorr.
Over 40 people attended the afternoon event including students from Bartlett High School. "We are thrilled to see young people showing an interest in this technology that is starting to become mainstream. They are smart to be looking to the future and seeing what wonderful lifestyle changes are being developed as well as the opportunities that are emerging for them. Solar energy is one of the most promising in terms of growth and longevity" states Lesley McCain Executive Director of ISEA.
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Mr. Gorr is also working on developing a network of Solar Ambassadors across the state to expand ISEA's educational reach to the general public. "A Solar Ambassador is typically a homeowner like myself with a solar energy system and no other agenda except to offer the public a local resource to learn about solar energy" he commented. Besides holding Solar Socials and Tours, Solar Ambassadors are also available to speak to interested groups, schools, churches, libraries, as well as exhibit at local events and festivals. "While every home isn't a candidate for a solar system, everyone can support the industry and its growth since rooftop solar is the least environmental impactful form of energy generation we currently have and a key part of achieving the carbon and pollution reduction goals we have set as a nation and as a world" adds Mike Bullock, co-chair of the Solar Ambassador program.
For more information about solar systems or to contact a local Solar Ambassador visit the ISEA website at www.illinoissolar.org.