Letter: Plug-in Prius comes to the Coastside Eco-Energy Expo and Solar Home Tour
This coming Saturday, Sep 15th, is the date for the Expo to be held at Half Moon Bay High School. A special exhibit will be a 100+ mile per gallon Plug-In Prius, one of only eight in the Bay Area. See: http://www.calcars.org/vehicles.html
This car has been retrofitted from a stock Prius. It has a much larger Lithium Ion battery pack and the engine controller allows the car to travel up to 40 miles on battery power alone. The gas engine is still there and will kick in as needed. It will allow the car to go an additional 350 miles on a tank, so range is not an issue.
The major benefit is that you can charge the batteries at night from an ordinary 110 V electrical outlet. That way, you are fueling up in the most environmentally friendly way, and when electricity rates are lowest.
Those of us with solar panels have a special advantage. We can generate power in the afternoon and sell it back to PG&E when rates are highest. Then, at night when rates are lower, we can buy back electricity from PG&E to charge our car.
The Expo will run from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm, and will feature 20 vendors of solar panels, books and green building supplies. There will displays by many of our local environmental non-profits and presentations by experts on green technologies and products. Julio Magalhaes of the Loma Prieta Chapter of the Sierra club will speak about the Cool Cities/Cool Counties initiative, www.coolcities.us.
The self guided Solar Home Tour, scheduled from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm, will start at the Expo. Each of the 14 featured homes and businesses will be shown with a photo and description of its energy saving and pollution reducing features. Maps will be provided and attendees will be able to choose the properties of most interest to them. Directional signs will show tour goers how to reach each property from Hwy 1. The properties will be in Half Moon Bay through Montara and one in San Gregorio. Property owners will show how much they saved in energy costs as well as maintenance costs and vendor support. Watch those electric meters run backwards!
The Expo, presentations and Solar Home Tour are all free to the public and families are invited.
The Expo exhibits and food booths will be in the High School Student Center/Multi-purpose room and outdoors in the central Quad area. The presentations will be in nearby classrooms.
This year’s Expo is twice as big as last year’s with more vendors, presentations and properties on Tour. It also brings together many local environmental organizations and governmental bodies concerned with reducing our ecological footprint. It will be of interest for coastsiders of all ages! You will come away with a better understanding of the technologies, costs, efficiencies and performance of a wide range of green products, from solar panels and solar attic fans to low water landscaping.
For more info, visit http://www.eco-energy-expo.org/
or call Dennis Paull at 650-712-0498.