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Guide to Off Grid Living

Living-Off-Grid.com Magazine Unveils New State-by-State Buyer’s Guide Detailing Where the Best Places Are to Buy an Off Grid Property in the United States

In addition, Living-Off-Grid.com also offers a “Guide to Off Grid Living” that provides over 100 chapters of information on producing solar power, rainwater collection, growing gardens, raising livestock and everything a family needs to build a self sustaining homestead

Living-Off-Grid.com - Rustic Log Cabin in the Mountain Forest

Living-Off-Grid.com – Rustic Log Cabin in the Mountain Forest’s Fall Foliage

Austin, Texas (May 26, 2020)Living Off Grid Magazine announced today that it is now offering a State-by-State Directory of the Best Off Grid Properties for Sale in the United States as well as a Free Guide to Off Grid Living that details what is takes to start living off the grid for every state in United States.

The State-by-State Off Grid Land for Sale Directory and Guide to Off Grid Living were created to meet the pent up demand from city dwellers who are now actively seeking to buy rural ranch or farmland properties, then build an off the grid homestead due to these recent events:

  • California PG&E utility shutting off electricity to more than 2 million customers without warning and threatening to do so on a regular basis in the fture; and
  • News stories airing on the Coronavirus and COVID19 by ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox News and other TV News networks that provoked panic buying in grocery stores that first stripped grocery stores of toilet paper and cleaning supplies and then quickly followed suit with stories on meat processing plants closing across America, which led to panic buying of beef, chicken and pork; and
  • And, last but not least, ruthless Democrat state governors issuing mandatory police state quarantines ordering all Americans to cease going to work and not allowing people to earn a paycheck causing the loss of more than 20.5 million jobs throughout the United States.

These events have caused many quick thinking Americans to start shopping for the “best places” in United States to buy an “off grid” or “rural” piece of property so they could head for the hills to start setting up self-sustaining homesteads that would survive even if utility companies started shutting off critical services such as electricity, natural gas and water services and grocery stores were suddenly sold out of meat, vegetables and other food supply items.

Offgrid homesteads can replace on-grid electiricty with solar / wind power, and on-grid water with rainwater collection and grocery store food with homegrown gardens and live stock so that there is no need to be dependent on civilization to make ends meet.

“Regardless of whose fault it was for causing the COVID 19 pandemic, Americans are now frantically searching for 10 to 100 acre parcels of off grid raw land where they can distance themselves faraway from police state governments that are now threating to go door-to-door enforcing mandatory COVID19 testing and forcing citizens to inject unproven vaccinations, which may kill more people than the actual Coronavirus itself,” said Robert Hoskins, Living-Off-Grid.com’s Editor. “We’ve seen our Facebook (FB) Off Grid Homes Discussion Group’s membership numbers increase significantly. In the past 3 months, we have seen growth rates of more than 60% rising from from 2,800 members in March 2020 to 4,624 members in May 2020. Our actual increases were 15% in March, 22% in April, and another 25% forecast by the end of May.”

Facebook Off Grid Living: Prepping to Live Off the Grid Growth Stats 2020

Facebook Off Grid Living: Prepping to Live Off the Grid Growth Stats 2020

“Our website’s Guide to Off Grid Living traffic also saw significant growth. For the entire year in 2019, we attracted around 2,690 readers that generated 5,230 page views.”

“Looking at the numbers for the first 5 months of 2020, our circulation has increased from 2,690 to 17,973 readers who have generated approximately 36,331 page views, up 6,930%. If this trend continues the magazine will have more than 41,000 readers generating 87,000 page views by then end of 2020.”

Living Off Grid Magazines’ Guide to Off Grid Living Website Annual Stats

“As a result of the massive pent up the demand for ‘Off Grid’ information we’ve even been getting calls  from TV reality series program directors asking us to help them put together reality TV show treatments and story ideas for them to begin producing new off grid reality TV shows,” Hoskins added.

“After surveying more than 6,640 off-grid FB group members, we’ve found that our members would be most interested in helping TV producers and program directors putting together an Off Grid version of PC Magazine, but with editorial targeting off grid homesteaders, which would include Off Grid Product Roundups, Off Grid Buyer’s Guides and Off Grid Equipment Bakeoffs to help off-gridders make educated purchase decisions for big ticket items such as rainwater collection cisterns, aquaponic garden setups, high-end wood-burning stoves and solar power arrays that can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000.”

In addition, members stated that the off grid industry lacks an organized supply chain of value-added resellers and distributors or rural area buying cooperatives where off grid customers can see live demonstrations of working products and take education courses to help them make better purchase decisions.

Many feel that establishing off grid buying cooperatives would be a great way to generate economic development in very poor rural areas and counties where jobs are extremely difficult to find and where off grid communities are beginning to see rapid growth and expansion. Buying cooperatives are the perfect way to generate loans and grants requests for the USDA, which can be the driving force in rural economic development.

Specialized training classes are esssential for helping educate a local workforce  installers, dirt movers, septic system installers, home builders, rainwater collection and solar installation experts that newcomers can turn to for expert installation of off grid products and services that every rural homestead will need. This process will generate a workforce of installers that can start news businessses that will would create good paying jobs as well as provide lots of installation companies that compete for new land owners business. Competition for these new products and services helps drive prices down and makes it very affordable to build new off grid homesteads.

About Living Off Grid Magazine

Living-Off-Grid.com provides a magazine with circulation of ~18,000+ readers and two Facebook Discussion Groups with ~ 6,640 members and business pages that allow people to follow, like and share information about what it takes to start a living-off-the-grid lifestyle anywhere in the United States.

Click on the links below to learn more:

Living Off Grid Magazine => http://living-off-grid.com/

State-by-State “Off Grid Land for Sale” Directory => https://livingoffgrid.home.blog/blog/

Facebook Discussion Groups:

Facebook Business Pages:

# # #

Contact:
Robert Hoskins
Living-Off-Grid.com
512-627-6622

Guide to Off Grid Living - The road less traveled for homeownership: A converted, one-of-a-kind school bus in North Carolina

How to Start Living Off the Grid in North Carolina

Searching for Information on How to Start Living Off Grid in North Carolina? Our Living-Off-Grid.com Site Provides Everything You Need to Research Before Building an Off Grid Cabin in North Carolina

Please Follow and Like our Off Grid Living Facebook North Carolina Group

How to Start Living Off Grid in North Carolina

Have questions about what it will take to live off the grid in North Carolina? Visit Living-Off-Grid.com to learn how to buy land in North Carolina, select the type of home you want to build, size your solar power array for electricity, build a rainwater collection system for fresh water, provide heat with a wood stove, grow a raised bed garden, and more.

Who Wants to Start Living Off the Grid in North Carolina?

What is the Best Way to Find Affordable Off Grid Land for Sale in North Carolina?

What Kind of Off Grid Home Would You Like Build in North Carolina?

How Much Solar Will You Need for Electricity in North Carolina?

How Much Rainwater Will You Need to Harvest in North Carolina?

How Will You Heat Your Off Grid Cabin in North Carolina?

How Will You Provide Food for Your Family in North Carolina?

How to Build Fences/Roads for Off Grid Properties in North Carolina?

# # #

Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
Robert Hoskins
(512) 627-6622
@OffGridLiving3


Robert Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns that sell off grid, remote cabin, solar, rainwater harvesting, bushcraft, outdoor adventure, camping, backpacking, tactical prepper gear, tools, products and services that target rural and off grid properties.
On a regular basis, Mr. Hoskins consults with marketing managers, PR contacts and social media specialists as well as websites, portals and ecommerce center that want to launch successful marketing campaigns to an off grid, prepper, and bushcraft target audience that like to prepare for when Shit-Hits-the-Fan situations (SHTF).
Google search “Robert Hoskins Crowdfunding PR” to see why Mr. Hoskins is considered one of the industry’s foremost crowdfunding experts that has amassed a huge social media following, which is dedicated to developing donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns to help raise money to introduce innovative new products and services to the marketplace.

Please like, follow us and share our content via:

Sign Up for Our Monthly “Off Grid Living in North Carolina” Newsletter:

 

Living Off Grid - Dante DiPirro is a lawyer who lives off grid in East Amwell Township, New Jersey

Homes for Living Off Grid in New Jersey

Searching for Information on How to Start Living Off Grid in New Jersey? Our Living-Off-Grid.com Site Provides Everything You Need to Research Before Building an Off Grid Cabin in New Jersey

Please Follow and Like our Off Grid Living Facebook New Jersey Group

How to Start Living Off Grid in New Jersey

Have questions about what it will take to live off the grid in New Jersey? Visit Living-Off-Grid.com to learn how to buy land in New Jersey, select the type of home you want to build, size your solar power array for electricity, build a rainwater collection system for fresh water, provide heat with a wood stove, grow a raised bed garden, and more.

Who Wants to Start Living Off Grid in New Jersey?

Living Off Grid - Dante DiPirro is a lawyer who lives off grid in East Amwell Township, New Jersey

Living Off Grid – Dante DiPirro is a lawyer who lives off grid in East Amwell, New Jersey

What is the Best Way to Find Affordable Off Grid Land for Sale in New Jersey?

What Kind of Off Grid Home Would You Like Build in New Jersey?

How Much Solar Will You Need for Electricity in New Jersey?

How Much Rainwater Will You Need to Harvest in New Jersey?

How Will You Heat Your Off Grid Cabin in New Jersey?

How Will You Provide Food for Your Family in New Jersey?

How to Build Fences/Roads for Off Grid Properties in New Jersey?

# # #

Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
Robert Hoskins
(512) 627-6622
@OffGridLiving3


Robert Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns that sell off grid, remote cabin, solar, rainwater harvesting, bushcraft, outdoor adventure, camping, backpacking, tactical prepper gear, tools, products and services that target rural and off grid properties.
On a regular basis, Mr. Hoskins consults with marketing managers, PR contacts and social media specialists as well as websites, portals and ecommerce center that want to launch successful marketing campaigns to an off grid, prepper, and bushcraft target audience that like to prepare for when Shit-Hits-the-Fan situations (SHTF).
Google search “Robert Hoskins Crowdfunding PR” to see why Mr. Hoskins is considered one of the industry’s foremost crowdfunding experts that has amassed a huge social media following, which is dedicated to developing donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns to help raise money to introduce innovative new products and services to the marketplace.

Please like, follow us and share our content via:

Sign Up for Our Monthly “Off Grid Living in New Jersey” Newsletter:

 

Guide to Off Grid Living - How to Select between Mono-Crystalline vs Polycrystalline Solar Panels

Off Grid, Grid-Tied or Hybrid Solar Power Array – Which Option Is Best for Your Rural Shed, Cabin or Home in Massachusetts?

Which Solar Power Option Is Best for Your Rural Shed, Cabin or Home in Massachusetts? Off Grid, Grid-Tied or a Hybrid Solar Power Array?

Off Grid, Grid-Tied or Hybrid Solar Power Array - Which Option Is Best for Your Rural Shed, Cabin or Home in Massachusetts

Off Grid, Grid-Tied or Hybrid Solar Power – Which Option Is Best for Your Rural Shed, Cabin or Home in Massachusetts

Please Follow and Like our Off Grid Living Facebook New York Group Page

Woburn, Massachusetts – As energy rates spike and frustrations with local utility companies continue to increase, a growing number of homeowners here in Massachusetts are seeking out ways to become more energy independent. Boston Solar often gets asked if it is possible to go completely off-grid with solar in Massachusetts for remote cabins and off grid properties.

Boston Solar says that installing solar is one of the best investments off-gridders can make for greater energy independence, and consulting with customers on what the best options are for families that are trying to decide exactly how much energy usage they need to offset for 24×7 operation.

For example, will homesteaders reduce their reliance on the power grid significantly by installing a grid-tied solar PV system, or will they want to cut ties to the local utility completely by installing an off-grid system? Or, will you opt for an in-between, hybrid option? We’ll explain what each of these systems means and help you choose which solar system is right for your home.

Which Solar Power Array Configuration is the Best?

One of the most important decisions you will need to make when you invest in residential solar is whether to install a grid-tied, off-grid, or hybrid system and understand what each of these mean. Here is a brief look at the benefits of each option, and what the implications are for your solar panel installation.

Grid-Tied Solar Power Array

Grid-tied solar systems are designed to provide a large percentage of your electricity needs while still allowing you to draw from the power grid as needed. During the day when the sun is shining, your grid-tied system supplies free and clean power for your home. Then, at night, you draw any electricity you need from the power grid.

Grid-tied systems are a popular option here in Massachusetts because they have a lower upfront cost but still offset a significant portion of a household’s electrical needs. Plus, if your solar system generates more electricity than you need during the day, you have the option to “sell” that electricity back to your local utility for credit if your utility participates in net metering.

Off Grid Solar Power Array

If you want to completely cut ties with your local utility company, you must install an off-grid system. Off-grid solar systems have more solar panels, plus a backup generator and enough battery storage to provide 100% of a household’s electricity needs.

Off-grid solar is typically only for properties that do not have access to the utility grid. If you are someone who heavily values energy independence and therefore want to minimize your reliance on the grid but not fully ready to go completely off-grid, you may want to consider a hybrid system.

Hybrid Solar Power Array

If you are looking for something like a hybrid of grid-tied and off-grid solar, you might consider a grid-tied system with a solar battery. This option is similar to an off-grid system in that it features battery storage, but it is not large enough to provide 100% of your electricity needs.

With this option, you can enjoy the greater energy independence that solar-plus-storage offers, without installing quite as large or expensive of a system on your property. Keep in mind, however, that solar batteries are still relatively expensive compared to solar panels.

Want to speak to an off grid solar expert? Call Boston Solar at 617-841-8484.

Read more => https://www.bostonsolar.us/solar-blog-resource-center/blog/off-grid-grid-tied-or-hybrid-which-option-is-best-for-you/

# # #

Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
Robert Hoskins
(512) 627-6622
@OffGridLiving3


Robert Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns that sell off grid, remote cabin, solar, rainwater harvesting, bushcraft, outdoor adventure, camping, backpacking, tactical prepper gear, tools, products and services that target rural and off grid properties.
On a regular basis, Mr. Hoskins consults with marketing managers, PR contacts and social media specialists as well as websites, portals and ecommerce center that want to launch successful marketing campaigns to an off grid, prepper, and bushcraft target audience that like to prepare for when Shit-Hits-the-Fan situations (SHTF).
Google search “Robert Hoskins Crowdfunding PR” to see why Mr. Hoskins is considered one of the industry’s foremost crowdfunding experts that has amassed a huge social media following, which is dedicated to developing donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns to help raise money to introduce innovative new products and services to the marketplace.

Van Life – Talking to Jess Meyrick about Living Off Grid in a Van, Minimalist Living and Travel Blogging 

Can Van Life Be Difficult, Living in Such a Small Space?

Living Off Grid - Van Life - Talking to Jess Meyrick about Living Off Grid in a Van, Minimalist Living and Travel Blogging

Living Off Grid – Van Life – Talking to Jess Meyrick about Living Off Grid in a Van, Minimalist Living and Travel Blogging

Please Follow and Like our Off Grid Living Facebook Group Page

California – From the way she speaks about it, I can tell the van is more than just a means of transportation to Jess, it’s a home. Despite the inevitable lack of space and sometimes messy practicalities, the freedom makes it all worth it.

I discover the van has a full size double bed, wardrobe, seating and kitchen area. Jess and Will have even managed to squeeze in a small shower/tub – and a fridge that pulls out from a drawer under their bed!

“We wanted the ability to live off grid without needing to stay in campsites. The van has solar panels on the roof that generate all the electricity we need for lights, fridge and charging ports.”

When I dare to ask how they dispose of waste on the road, Jess laughs, “without sounding too gross, the worst bit is definitely the bathroom department.”  They decided a ‘porta potty’ was a necessity for the van, especially during the winter in the mountains. But it’s not as messy as you’d think, “we just dispose of the wastewater at campsites or service stations sewage dump locations.”

Living a Minimalist Van Life, Sustainable Lifestyle

Jess concludes that living minimally is more of a state of mind. “We actually travel very lightly in the van – we quickly realized from our first trip how little we use.”

The key is to conserve your resources and live within your means, she says. The couple explain that their 80-litre water tank can last them three days, while still showering and using the water for washing up.

“On average, one person in the UK uses approx. 140 litres of water a day,” Jess tells me, “so what we’ve realized is, it’s not about sacrificing, it’s simply about being considerate.”

Read more => https://www.euronews.com/living/2019/11/15/life-off-grid-in-a-van-we-talk-minimalist-living-with-travel-blogger-jess-meyrick

Houses Built for Off-Grid Living Include Earthships Built with Hemp, Hay, Rainwater Collection and Passive Solar Heating

Off-grid living can vary widely, but generally embraces a sustainable, autonomous lifestyle including generating your own solar power, rainwater collection, waste removal/sewage solutions (such as a worm farm waste system) and growing indoor aquaponic gardens

Living Off Grid - Houses Built for Off-Grid Living Include Earthships, Hemp and Hay

Living Off Grid – Houses Built for Off-Grid Living Include Earthships, Hemp and Hay

Please Follow and Like our Off Grid Living Facebook Group Page

Adelaide, Australia – Kathy Menzel says she used to be completely oblivious to power bills, “just running along in the hamster wheel like everybody else, you know, busy, busy, busy, spend, spend, spend”. She and her husband Bob, both IT professionals, did have an inkling they wanted something different though, yearning for a serene country lifestyle with no neighbors.

When they finally found their dream block in the Adelaide Hills, reality hit home. “We’d been looking for five years for this great piece of land in the middle of nowhere but still easy to commute to the city,” she says. “But it was going to cost $450,000 to get on to the grid.” The cost of connecting was far more than the $238,000 for the 10 acre block, which was only 1.5km from a main road.

Undeterred, Menzel researched sustainable housing and calculated their energy and water needs. The result was a self-sufficient home they’ve been enjoying for four years now – which cost $150,000 less than the price of connecting to the grid. “It’s completely changed my way of living and my whole understanding of everything to do with energy waste and carbon,” she says of her new minimalist, eco-friendly lifestyle.

These days Menzel is acutely aware of her energy and water consumption. “It’s not an endless resource; someone’s paying for it somewhere, and I mean look at the climate – the Earth is paying for it, isn’t it?”

What are the challenges and perks? “Oh, just perks,” she laughs.

For one reason or another, Australians are increasingly taking up the gauntlet while governments drag their feet on sustainable housing regulations. Even the six-star building standards, for instance, just don’t cut it, says Menzel. “You know, you can put windows wherever you like and you can just run a big great air-conditioning system and pay a fortune.”

They built their home guided by “passive house” principles, achieving a 7.9-star energy rating. With no air-conditioning and a combustion heater for cold winter evenings, she says it never goes below 16C or above 26C inside in a region that dips below zero in winter and can soar over 40C in summer. Two rainwater tanks provide plenty of water, with enough to spare for the South Australian Country Fire Service.

Off-grid living can vary widely, but generally embraces a sustainable, autonomous lifestyle. This includes generating your own power, water, waste removal and sewage solutions (such as a worm farm waste system) and can extend to growing your own food.

Possibly the ultimate answer to sustainable living is the earthship, a passive solar shelter made from recycled tires, plastic and glass bottles and aluminum cans. “You can use other stuff as well,” says expert Martin Freney. “Like you can salvage sheets of metal from car bodies and old fridges and washing machines and use them as roof shingles if you’re really creative.”

Read more at => https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2019/nov/29/earthships-hemp-and-hay-the-houses-built-for-off-grid-living

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How to Heat Off Grid Homes and Cabins with Trombe Walls and Passive Solar Window Heaters

How to Build a Passive Solar Trombe Wall  Heater that Can Be Made with Stones and Sheet Metal for Off Grid Homes and Cabins

Off Grid Living - How to Build a Passive Solar Heater Trombe Wall with Stones or Sheet Metal

Off Grid Living – How to Build a Passive Solar Heater Trombe Wall with Stones or Sheet Metal

How to Build a Passive Solar Furnace Heater Also Called Trombe Wall

Phoenix, Arizona – Solar can also be used to heat a shed, cabin or home with no electricity by building a passive solar furnace heater, which is very similar to building a solar hot water heater except that you’ll be heating air inside a black box with a window and using aluminum/tin cans, copper tubing, rocks or sheets of tin roofing that are painted black to absorb heat.

As hot air rises it will flow from the heated box into a colder structure at the top of the room while sucking in colder air at the bottom of the using a Trombe Wall vacuum air pattern. To improve circulation, you can add a solar attic fan that will air circulation dramatically.

How to Heat Homes with Passive Solar Heaters and Solar Attic Fans

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#living #offgrid #trombe #wall #passive #solar #furnace #heater #attic #fans #cabins #sheds #homes #solarenergy #solarpower #solarpanels #renewableenergy #energy #greenenergy #solarsystem #cleanenergy #gogreen #gosolar #solarpanel #sun #solarpv #energiasolar #sustainability #renewables #bhfyp

Enphase: Demand for Solar-Battery Systems Could Soar After California Blackouts as Customers Forced to Live Off Grid

Grid woes “will only increase the attach rates for storage” in the country’s biggest rooftop solar market, Enphase CEO says.

Living Off Grid - Enphase - Demand for Solar-Battery Systems Could Soar After California Blackouts

Living Off Grid – Enphase – Demand for Solar-Battery Systems Could Soar After California Blackouts

Enphase’s current growth is based around its core solar microinverter business. But in discussing the company’s Q3 earnings Tuesday, CEO Badri Kothandaraman focused on how Enphase’s soon-to-launch integrated energy storage system could aid Californians facing the state’s unfolding wildfire and grid blackout emergency.

California-based Enphase is far from the only residential solar equipment provider adding batteries to the rooftop PV proposition. Sunrun, the U.S. rooftop solar leader, says that a quarter of its California solar customers are now choosing to add batteries to their systems.

While Kothandaraman declined to predict how many battery-backed Ensemble systems the company will sell, he expects similar “attach rates” to those seen by Sunrun in the California market.

The demand for solar-battery backup systems could skyrocket, Kothandaraman said, with millions of Californians undergoing days-long blackouts this month under the expanded fire-prevention power outage regime of bankrupt utility Pacific Gas & Electric.

Read more => https://buff.ly/34g7G6M

#California #OffGridLiving #LivingOffGrid #Enphase #MicroInverters #Solar #Panels #Batteries #PGE #Wildfire #Blackouts #Discounts

Elon Musk Says He has the Solar Solution for California’s Fire-Related Blackouts Starting at only $15,000

Order Tesla Solar + Powerwall battery for 24/7 clean power and no
blackouts!, Musk
tweeted, adding a link to the solar section of Tesla’s website

Living Off Grid - Elon Musk Says He has the Solar Solution for California’s Fire-Related Blackouts Starting at only $15,000

Living Off Grid – Elon Musk Says He has the Solar Solution for California’s Fire-Related Blackouts Starting at only $15,000

SAN FRANCISCO — As California faces massive wildfires and extensive power failures, Elon Musk has taken to Twitter with his latest cause: equipping residents here with solar panels and giant batteries to power their homes.

In a series of tweets last week, the Tesla chief executive made a simple case to affected state residents: buy his solar and battery setup to ride out the next disruption. Power shut-offs from the local utility, Pacific Gas & Electric, will only become more prevalent over the next decade. And solar-equipped homes are more efficient and better valued on the housing market. He even offered a $1,000 discount to those affected by days of power failures caused by wildfires.

“Order Tesla Solar + Powerwall battery for 24/7 clean power & no blackouts!” Musk tweeted, adding a link to the solar section of Tesla’s website.

Read more at => https://buff.ly/2PPUOAe

#California #OffGridLiving #LivingOffGrid #ElonMusk #MicroInverters #Solar #Panels #Batteries #PGE #Wildfire #Blackouts #Discounts

What Electric Power Outages Mean for Solar’s Potential in California to Solve the PG&E Electricity Blackouts

Recent blackouts in California have millions of people looking for ways to keep the power resulting in a huge spike in interest in another technology – solar panels and home batteries

What Electric Power Outages Mean For Solar's Potential in California

Living Off Grid – What Electric Power Outages Mean For Solar’s Potential in California

Solar Power to Solve Northern California Wildfire Electricity Blackout Crisis

The recent blackouts in California have millions of people looking for ways to keep the power on. Some bought portable generators, but there was a huge spike in interest in another technology – solar panels and home batteries. Lauren Sommer of member station KQED reports.

Interview of Anne Hoskins by Lauren Sommer, KQED

LAUREN SOMMER, BYLINE: Power is out at every house on this block in the Berkeley Hills. You could tell ’cause all the cars are parked outside the garages ’cause the garage doors won’t open, except for one.

HOWARD MATIS: Well, it works.

SOMMER: Hi, there.

MATIS: Hi.

SOMMER: I’m Lauren.

MATIS: Hi, Lauren.

SOMMER: The lights were on at Howard Matis’s house during the last PG&E outage. His fridge…

MATIS: Which you can see – fully powered and cold.

SOMMER: That’s because inside his garage…

MATIS: OK. We can go up here.

SOMMER: …Are two Tesla Powerwall batteries, about four feet tall, mounted on the wall.

MATIS: The whole house – everything – everything is powered by these two batteries.

SOMMER: The solar panels on his roof keep them charged. Solar alone won’t usually work during an outage because it’s still connected to the grid. But batteries let you wire a house to be its own little island, a 24-hour microgrid. Matis bought this system because he expects California’s fire problem to get worse.

MATIS: I lived through one disaster, and so I know what a wildfire is like.

SOMMER: Matis lost his home in the 1991 Oakland Hills fire. Some of his neighbors died trying to escape. People there are more fire-aware now. The power lines are buried underground. But they’re not immune from PG&E’s blackouts. Matis is still frustrated with the utility.

MATIS: I’ve talked to PG&E in the past, and I realized they didn’t know what they’re talking about.

SOMMER: Folks from the utility beg to differ. But other companies see an opportunity in that resentment.

ANNE HOSKINS: We’ve had a very big uptick in – I guess we would call them leads.

SOMMER: Anne Hoskins is chief policy officer at Sunrun. It sells solar and battery systems.

HOSKINS: We have a better way than relying on this, you know, over-a-century-old system.

SOMMER: Hoskins says the batteries aren’t just for emergencies. Homeowners can use them every day to store solar power, unlike portable gas generators.

HOSKINS: They’re loud. They’re dirty. And that also contributes to the problem, in our view, that we’re facing, which is climate change.

SOMMER: But batteries are pricey. A Powerwall costs more than $6,000, plus installation. Hoskins says state rebates and federal tax credits can knock thousands off that price, and Tesla is offering a discount for Californians affected by the blackouts. Still, there’s the potential for wealthier homeowners to buy their way out of these blackouts, leaving everyone else feeling the brunt.

HOSKINS: How can we build a system so that all those investments that people are making can bring a benefit to the grid as a whole?

SOMMER: Hoskins says that’s possible. You can have a bunch of solar and batteries in people’s homes that can feed into the local grid and supply everyone. It’s called a virtual power plant. Sunrun is planning one in West Oakland, where 500 low-income households will get solar and batteries. The idea is that making power locally means you don’t need as many big transmission lines to bring it in from far away.

Read more of Lauren Sommer, KQED report => https://buff.ly/2NM45Xk