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Milwaukee Installer Reflects on His Career In Solar February 5, 2013 - 1:45pm

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- 2044 days ago -
"...Milwaukee's solar program -- has worked to change that. The city is intensifying efforts to demystify the solar installation process for local residents and helping connect them to certified installers...." Please check this. Is Your City Willing?


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Ruth R (246)
Tuesday February 12, 2013, 3:03 pm
From The Article!!!
How can we make it easier for more Americans to go solar? Lessons can be learned from the City of Milwaukee and its efforts to create a thriving, local solar market. Follow our weeklong series to hear from Milwaukee-based installers, residents and city leaders on what it’s like to be a part of this solar community.

Share your enthusiasm. This is Nick Matthes’ advice to fellow-electricians with an interest in performing solar installations.

After spending 10 years as an electrician, Nick decided to pursue the training and skills needed to become a certified solar installer. Now established in the field, Nick says its genuine enthusiasm for the craft that helps in guiding the Milwaukee community through the process of going solar.

Nick describes his solar career as a never-ending quest for knowledge. The work of an installer is highly variable, so it pays to stay informed. “I have to integrate solar design into a whole bunch of different scenarios. Each presents its own obstacles,” explained Nick. This can mean everything from figuring out the best positioning for panels on a Victorian-style roof or sorting through fluctuations in permitting, utility and state requirements for residential solar. “The value of education cannot be understated. The more approaches you can utilize in integrating solar the better,” said Nick.

One obstacle that’s no longer much of an issue is getting potential customers up to speed on the solar installation process. Said Nick, “One of the biggest hurdles before was trying to explain the process and price to customers -- price can put up a large barrier.” Milwaukee Shines -- the City of Milwaukee’s solar program -- has worked to change that. The city is intensifying efforts to demystify the solar installation process for local residents and helping connect them to certified installers. “Now it’s coming from a non-biased third party who let’s consumers know of any red flags. It gives them a sense of security right off the bat,” said Nick.

Another welcome change? The partnerships that are being created throughout Milwaukee’s solar community -- from solar suppliers to nonprofits to installers. Nick explained, “Milwaukee Shines has been working on getting everyone together and on the same page. We’re all excited about selling things locally.”

As he reflects on his own experiences as part of Milwaukee’s solar community, Nick’s enthusiasm starts to kick in. “I get to put together solar electric systems. It’s gratifying to be going to work and doing something that I view as a worthwhile endeavor.”

Interested in joining America’s solar workforce? Our Solar Instructor Training Network offers high-quality, local and accessible training in solar system design, installation, sales and inspection. "

Ruth R (246)
Tuesday February 12, 2013, 3:04 pm
"Interested in joining America’s solar workforce? Our Solar Instructor Training Network offers high-quality, local and accessible training in solar system design, installation, sales and inspection. "

Past Member (0)
Tuesday February 12, 2013, 3:14 pm
Obama's hand picked green companies all went belly, no, I wouldn't place any hope on this moving forward. We had the solar panel push in the late 70's early 80's and they went belly up. I certainly wouldn't join a solar's the kiss of death as we have all witnessed.

The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. But a chinchilla ranch. I heard they were lucrative, too.

Lydia S (155)
Tuesday February 12, 2013, 4:23 pm
What a terrific post !
I am very interested in solar , We had gotten an estimate in the mid 90's and for us it was cost prohibitive
But we are considering solar again and I have to say when we had lost power due to hurricane sandy
my outdoor solar led lights truly saved the day , we were able to put them throughout the house safely and
recharge the panels outside during the day .
Thanks Ruth

Carol H (229)
Wednesday February 13, 2013, 4:54 am
noted, thanks

Giana Peranio - Paz (398)
Thursday February 14, 2013, 2:03 am
Good for Milwaukee!

Debra Van Way (12)
Thursday February 14, 2013, 4:55 pm
Well, Diane O. - you have every right to not want to pursue a career you lack belief in. I will be building a smaller home in the next year or so and it will be solar powered. I have friends that have already done so with their existing homes and are quite pleased with their savings and we are in West Virginia. The costs have gone down considerably and there are many solar power companies in this country that are doing very well. Why are you on Care2 again? You seem to disagree with everything we stand for-and quite often you treat other members with a very demeaning attitude. I have read quite a few of your posts over the past several months and they all seem to follow the same negative trend. You were quite correct with one statement in your comment for this article : "The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior."

Thanks for sharing the article Ruth! Noted it.

Birgit W (160)
Thursday February 14, 2013, 5:29 pm

. (0)
Friday February 15, 2013, 12:37 pm
Thanks Ruth

Alice C (1797)
Friday February 15, 2013, 5:15 pm
Solar Electricity Handbook
2013 Edition
PageSolar News
and ArticlesOnline
CalculatorsBuy The
QuestionsAsk me a Question
Solar Incentives
There are many solar incentives around the world which have been put in place to try and increase the amount of power produced by solar. The grants and feed-in tariffs are changing on a regular basis. We have provided where possible links for each country which has grants and feed-in tariffs in place as incentives to install solar.

We will maintain the information on a regular basis, but we can not guarantee its accuracy.

Feed-In Tariff - quick overview
Most feed-in tariffs with up to date information is available on the PV Tech website - tariff watch page.
We have also included below specific information relating to each country and where you can apply for the tariffs.

Quick links
Czech Republic
United Kingdom
United States

Have you read the book?
The Solar Electricity Handbook is the world's best selling book on solar electricity. If you are serious about solar power, you need this book.Assuming no previous experience with solar power, the Solar Electricity Handbook tells you what you need to know about installing solar energy.

Available from all good booksellers around the world, The 2013 edition is now 25% bigger, with even more information, bigger diagrams and the latest details about this exciting technology.

Click here to read a preview and to buy the Solar Electricity Handbook today.

Australia Feed-In Tariff
Australia pays different rates of Feed in Tariffs for different territories and even different electricity providers. Details of all the tariffs can be found on the Australia feed-in tariff page.
Belgium has a tax relief from the Belgium government and also the Flemish government has introduced Green certificates. Full details can be found here.

Canada Feed-In Tariff
The Canada feed-in tariff program is split into regions so far the only region to offer a feed-in tariff is Ontario.
Ontario offer 2 different programs, MicroFIT for projects less than 10 kW and FIT for projects over 10 kW. Further details can be found on the Canada Feed-In Tariff page.

Canada used to have in place a ecoENERGY Retrofit homes grant, this grant finished 31st March 2010.

Each province or territory has their own grants and incentives a full list can be found on the Office of Energy Efficiency website.

Czech Republic
The Czech Republic run two incentives a Feed-in Tariff or a Green Bonus, which is an amount paid on top of the market price.
The Energy Regulatory Office determines the FiT and the green bonus each year in advance. The price must not be lower than 95% of the year before.

In 2009 France revised it's Feed-In tariff. The new rates are available on the PV-Tech Website. France has separate rates for roof, ground mounted and building integrated systems, guaranteed for 20 years.
Germany was one of the first countries to introduce a feed-in tariff and after its success other countries have adopted their model.
due to the success of the tariff Germany have had to reduce the rate on several occasions, in January 2011 it has been announced that further cuts could be brought forward

The new tariff rates are as follows, these figures are likely to be reduced each year:

Capacity/Category 01.10.10 01.01.2011
Up to 30 kW Building 33.03 28.74
Up to 100 kW Building 31.42 27.33
Up to 1 MW Building 29.73 25.86
Over 1 MW Building 24.79 21.56
Conversion/Sealed Areas 25.37 22.07
Other Qualified Areas 24.26 21.11
United Kingdom
The UK had a Solar grant in place until April 2010, this has now been replaced with the feed-in tariff.
The UK Feed-In Tariff started 1st April 2010 to try and increase the amount of renewable energy on the national grid.

The EU has set a target that 20% of all energy will be renewable by 2020 and the UK is committed to delivering its share of the target.

United States
There are lots of different US solar incentives and feed-in tariffs available. There are incentives for Federal, State, local authority and utility companies.
Each State has a Public Utilities Commissions and they set the standard for interconnection to the distribution grid.
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