Norman residents can learn the ins and outs of beating the heat at a solar energy meeting 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Norman Public Library Central, 225 N. Webster Ave.
Earlier this summer, the Oklahoma City solar energy company, Solar Power of Oklahoma, began traveling from city to city sharing information about solar energy at town hall-style meetings.
“As lifelong Oklahomans, we know that … home electric bills are about to climb in tandem with the temps,” Solar Power of Oklahoma co-founder J.W. Peters said. “We decided to launch the town hall roadshow to help educate Oklahomans about solar power.”
Peters said the meetings were developed as a way to confront the lack of knowledge Oklahomans have about solar energy.
“What we’ve learned over the past six months is that there are a lot of people in Oklahoma that don’t understand how solar works,” Peters said. “We just want to go out and educate people in what the process looks like, how solar works, what it means for the customers, their pocket books and long term investment in their own energy independence.”
The meeting will consist of a 20 minute presentation by Peters and about 20 minutes allotted to questions.
“It’s really a very, very informal meet and greet just to answer whatever questions we possibly can,” Peters said. “Mainly, I just want to tell people that solar is an option, and it’s here in Oklahoma.”
Peters said this is the right time for residents to consider solar energy, because utility costs for electricity generated by fossil fuels are climbing.
“We are seeing a steady increase in utility costs when it comes to electricity,” Peters said. “When you look at how much somebody is going to spend on electricity over the next 25 to 30 years, those numbers are just kind of mind boggling.”
Peters said solar energy can be an affordable option, especially taking into consideration the federal tax credit that allows customers to deduct 30 percent of the cost of installing a solar energy system from their federal taxes.
“Solar is a renewable energy that is overly abundant, and even though there is an upfront cost for it, a lot of times, we can actually keep that cost at or below what they’re currently paying now,” Peters said. “And it’s a system that they actually own.”
Solar Power of Oklahoma co-founder Kevin Jones said beyond saving money, switching to solar is a way for people to reduce their carbon footprint.
“More than us going out and promoting Solar Power of Oklahoma, we’re going out, and we’re promoting the solar industry,” Peters said. “We want people to be able to hear about what solar has to offer.”