Making the Commitment Series: Running on the Sun
Phillipe Bellevin and his PV/EV combination was already lined up for the first post in the “Making the Commitment” series. Then last week Phillipe was runner up in the BT Chairman’s Award Winners 2011 in CSR Supporter of the Year category. You can see Phillipe tell his story on video here and read his additional insights below.
After a year of considering solar panels and BT’s employee discount program, we took the plunge. The reason why? The possible availability of mass market electric vehicles.
The corporate program through BT can provide the kick-start for employees who are considering solar but haven’t taken the first step: contacting a solar installer. In our case, the BT incentive provided just such a kick-start, and combined with the availability of the Nissan Leaf became a really compelling proposition.
So our SunPower panels (with EnPhase converters) got installed last October (2010), and we took delivery of our Nissan LEAF in early March (2011).
Our experience so far has been phenomenal.
From watching the meter remain virtually unchanged day after day or go backwards, to passing gas stations and thinking “wow, that’s old fashioned” to driving with the windows down and hearing the conversations of people on the sidewalks instead of our engine… it has truly been a mindset-changing endeavor. We are particularly happy with how zippy, fun-to-drive and convenient the car is for all our city commutes here in San Francisco.
We created the blog RunningOnSun.com to help publicize the concept of running electric vehicles on home solar installations, and we hope to add more original content as we develop the metrics around our system and understand more about how this configuration pays off.
In the meantime, we hope to educate more people on the impact of electric vehicles.
Stay tuned for the next blog post in the Making the Commitment series. Next up: Solar Makes Math Cents.