Craft Your Personal Energy Policy

Installing Solar PV on the Olympic and Kitsap Peninsulas and Islands Since 2003

Power Trip Energy is dedicated to improving the future of our community and our state through the use of renewable energy technologies.  We specialize in the design and installation of grid-tied PV systems on the Olympic and Kitsap Peninsulas, and have installed over 2 MW of grid-tied pv on over 400 homes and small businesses since 2003.  Call us for the finest renewable energy technologies to help you reduce your energy usage by harvesting the free and abundant solar energy that surrounds us.

Latest From The Blog…

US Residential Solar Installations Outpace Commercial Installations for the First Time

The pace of residential solar pv installation continues to grow dramatically.  The growth of distributed generation is a disruptive trend and a welcome one.  While some fear change, others embrace it.  We are proud to be doing our small part to bring about that change.

Most pv going in right now is in utility scale projects by far.  This report from SEIA states that residential installations have outpaced commercial installations, you can also gather other interesting statistics here:

On a philosophical note, while we applaud the installation of large multi-hundred mega-watt pv installations by utilities, it really only solves one aspect of the problems with our current system.  Yes the utility-produced solar electricity is clean, carbon-free and better than coal, gas, nuclear, or big hydro from an environmental standpoint, however it is still the privatization of what is a universally distributed resource.  “Who owns the sun?” is a question long asked.  We are bathed in an abundant and beautiful resource reaching you in about 5 minutes from 93 million miles away.  Just as much sunshine more or less reaches your house per square foot as anywhere else.  So why should you pay someone else to turn that solar energy into useful electricity?  As long as we continue to let others have control over our power resources, there will be economic injustice inherent in the system, and choices made that are not in your best interest.  Without getting any more revolutionary,  for you I recommend putting up your own pv array, and capturing that energy yourself without letting corporate middlemen insert themselves into your relationship with the sun.  It is only through direct personal action that you can help make changes that benefit our environment and benefit your family as well.


5 kw, Port Townsend, Spring 2014

5.9 kw, Port Townsend, Spring 2014

The Largest US Utility-Run Roof-top Solar Program announced in Arizona

Arizona Public Service (APS) has been in my solar news pipeline quite a bit recently as they are generally whining about roof-top solar and attempting to obstruct progress and profit from other people’s investment by adding solar surcharges to monthly bills for net-metering customers who have installed pv on their homes.  At the same time, they are scrambling to meet a 2025 RPS (renewable portfolio standard) requirement of 15% with a 3% solar carve out.

It now appears that APS will install pv modules on 3000 homes (20 MW total, 6.6 KW avg for each home) and give customers a $30 per month credit on their bills for the use of their roofs.  The contract is the standard 20 years, so the total these customers will be paid is $7200 over the 240 months.

If  pv array in Arizona makes 1800 kwh per KW per year, then that 6.6 KW pv array would generate 11,880 kwh/year (at times of peak load, which is the most valuable time to make electricity.  If the average retail rate of electricity is 12.5 cents per kwh for residential Arizona electricity, then the retail value of the electricity made by that hypothetical 6.6 KW pv system is $1485 today (do you think the price of electricity might go up over the next 20 years?)   For that amount of electricity, APS is willing to pay you $360, a rate locked in for 20 years.  Hmm, thanks but no thanks.

If I am reading this correctly, it will look tempting to many, but its a very good deal for APS, and a bad deal for the customers.  I’d rather own my pv myself and get the full benefit of all the energy it produces over its life, rather than lease my roof for a paltry $30 per month and let the utility get the bulk of the benefit.  I’m thinking my sunny roof in Arizona would be worth a whole lot more than that.

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“To all the employees of Power Trip Energy!  Thanks for the awesome solar installation, you have motivated me to save more energy and promote solar power even more.”

Kevin Koski - Bremerton, WA.

“By generating our own clean electricity, our family is reducing air pollution while being energy independent. And we’re doing it now so that our children can inherit a better world.”

Stuart MacRobbie - Sequim, WA

“It’s been great to work with you all, from the office support to the sales staff, all the way through the electricians and the guys on the job. We couldn’t ask for more!”

Susan and Ernie Kroll

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