Solar Update: December 2009, monthly and annual report

    Monthly solar energy production from our Sunpower system for 2009.
    Monthly solar energy production from our Sunpower system for 2009.

    It’s time for the monthly solar update and the end of year round up on our Sunpower solar energy panels. With the shortened daylight hours in the winter and the cloudy days, the solar production, as expected, is about 1/3-1/2 of what it is during the summer months.

    However, our wine cellar doesn’t need to be cooled as often in the winter so I think this compensates a bit for the decrease in solar energy production. One thing I wish PG&E would do is publish a report showing how much you have saved because of your solar energy system. Right now there is no easy way to figure this out. Since we installed the wine cellar about the same time as we commenced generating some of our own electricity, it is very difficult for me to do a comparison. Such a report would help people to better assess the financial impact, as well as the environmental impact, of their energy decision.

    Unfortunately, last December, I didn’t print out the annual bar graph so I really can’t compare last year’s to this year’s solar production. Oh well, something to strive for next year.

    I am really looking forward to March of 2010 since I joined a community agriculture program and will be receiving vegetables from Live Earth Farms. I’ll keep you posted on my experiences with this program.

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    Loni Stark
    Loni Stark is a self-professed foodie, and adventure travel seeker, and yet is also passionate about technology’s impact on business and creativity. She's the host of our Stark Insider video features. It’s been said her laugh can be heard from San Jose all the way up to the Golden Gate Bridge. She makes no claims to super powers, although sushi is definitely her Kryptonite. Loni's story...