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Wednesday, December 12 , 2018, 6:58 am | Fair 43º


Central Coast Solar Tour to Shed Light on Lowering Energy Costs

The Oct. 3 event will include open-house tours of homes and businesses in Santa Maria and Lompoc

The Central Coast Solar Tour and the nonprofit American Solar Energy Society are bringing together more than 5,000 homes, schools and businesses — on the Central Coast and across the United States — to introduce neighbors to the solar technologies they are using to drastically reduce and stabilize monthly energy bills, reduce harmful carbon emissions, and enjoy rich tax credits and cash incentives as they improve property values.

Local residents fed up with fossil fuel prices will join more than 150,000 participants nationwide to discover the latest real-world insight on how neighbors can use solar energy and energy efficiency and become more energy independent.

“In the wake of national polls revealing that runaway energy costs is the economic issue Americans believe most personally affects them, the ASES National Solar Tour brings real-life examples of how neighbors are harnessing free energy from the sun to generate electricity, warm and cool their homes, heat water and slash monthly utility bills,” said Neal Lurie, director of marketing for the American Solar Energy Society.

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 3, the Central Coast Solar Tour will offer open-house tours of eight to 12 homes and businesses in the Santa Maria and Lompoc areas.

The self-guided tours, which last year attracted more than 140,000 people in 49 U.S. states, afford participants the direct perspectives of homeowners and installers about the costs, components, and economic and environmental benefits of going solar.

“Although small compared to tours in San Diego and San Francisco, we will still showcase a variety of solar systems. The tour includes small, residential electric and hot water, to the largest installation in the region, the 88-kilowatt solar electric generation at Hayward Truss in Santa Maria. Expert installers and representatives from Lompoc Electric and Pacific Gas & Electric will be on hand to answer questions. The tour is all about education.” said Jim Riggins, organizer of the Central Coast Solar Tour. “The tours also give local residents a glimpse at how an increasing number of local families and businesses are going solar. It’s part of a national collaboration of unprecedented proportion to help Americans address a critical problem, while introducing them to an array of clean, effective solutions that generate ongoing economic and environmental rewards.

The event is free and open to the public. Click here for more information about the event, including addresses and maps.

— Jim Riggins is an organizer of the Central Coast Solar Tour.

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