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Thu Dec 13, 2012, 12:05 PM

David Crane and Robert F Kennedy Jr.- Solar Panels for Every Home

WE don’t think much about pitch pine poles until storms like Hurricane Sandy litter our landscape with their splintered corpses and arcing power lines. Crews from as far away as California and Quebec have worked feverishly to repair or replace those poles as utility companies rebuild their distribution systems the way they were before.


Residents of New Jersey and New York have lived through three major storms in the past 16 months, suffering through sustained blackouts, closed roads and schools, long gas lines and disrupted lives, all caused by the destruction of our electric system. When our power industry is unable to perform its most basic mission of supplying safe, affordable and reliable power, we need to ask whether it is really sensible to run the 21st century by using an antiquated and vulnerable system of copper wires and wooden poles.

Some of our neighbors have taken matters into their own hands, purchasing portable gas-powered generators in order to give themselves varying degrees of “grid independence." But these dirty, noisy and expensive devices have no value outside of a power failure. And they’re not much help during a failure if gasoline is impossible to procure.

Having spent our careers in and around the power industry, we believe there is a better way to secure grid independence for our homes and businesses. (Disclosure: Mr. Crane’s company, based in Princeton, N.J., generates power from coal, natural gas, and nuclear, wind and solar energy.) Solar photovoltaic technology can significantly reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and our dependence on the grid. Electricity-producing photovoltaic panels installed on houses, on the roofs of warehouses and big box stores and over parking lots can be wired so that they deliver power when the grid fails.

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http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/13/opinion/solar-panels-for-every-home.html?hp

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Reply David Crane and Robert F Kennedy Jr.- Solar Panels for Every Home (Original post)
n2doc Dec 2012 OP
exboyfil Dec 2012 #1

Response to n2doc (Original post)

Thu Dec 13, 2012, 02:20 PM

1. A great jobs program as well

Huge benefits to the decentralized grid. If you price in the externalities (including global warming) we have probably reached being highly competitive with coal. No reason that we can't set up reroofing jobs (with its attendant labor) to include solar panels. Need nontoxic storage methods to go along with the panels so base loading can be better planned.

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