AP NEWS

Smart Energy: the Earth Day Fair is coming

April 15, 2019

Our banner reads: “Douglas County Smart Energy: Energy Efficiency and Renewables. Moving Our Community Forward.”

On Saturday, April 20, the 19th Annual Earth Day and Energy Fair will be held in the Exhibit Hall at the Douglas County Fairgrounds and will feature dozens of exhibitors from our county. Douglas County Smart Energy will be there. By tapping into the expertise of our members — the major utilities, non-profits and citizen advocates — we will be highlighting ways energy efficiency and renewable energy can benefit residents of our community.

For example, Melanie MacKinnon will hold an in-depth workshop on how the latest in solar technology and incentives can be made available to households in our area.

It has been a banner year for our efforts to bring solar development to Douglas County. Through multiple partnerships, we have brought a substantial number of kilowatts of solar energy to the local food bank, Glide Fire District and Saving Grace Pet Adoption Center. Now this workshop will focus on how individual households can reap the benefits of solar as well.

Another member of Douglas County Smart Energy, David Reeck, will hold a workshop on electric cars and charging stations. This technology of the future is here now and David has worked tirelessly over the last year to bring electric charging stations to Douglas County. And thanks to Pacific Power and the City of Roseburg, we will see a significant expansion of the number of charging stations in our community. David has also submitted an application to Volkswagen for additional charging stations under their program.

Speaking of electric cars, two of our members who drive them will staff a booth with detailed information on what you need to know about owning an electric car. And while you’re at the fair, check out the electric car display in front of the building, courtesy of the Douglas County Global Warming Coalition.

It is said that energy efficiency is the low hanging fruit when it comes to saving money and energy. Douglas County Smart Energy is no stranger to this concept. At our booth, we will have a variety of energy saving tips as well as the latest available incentives offered by the utilities and Energy Trust of Oregon.

As part of our effort to promote energy efficiency, this past year Douglas County Smart Energy held six workshops promoting significant incentives for the purchase of ductless heat pumps. These systems are extremely energy efficient as well as enhancing the comfort of the home. Approximately fifty households took advantage of these time limited incentives. A follow up survey showed unanimous satisfaction among respondents.

Our energy efficiency information runs the gamut from energy efficient systems such as these to simple measure such as installing LED lighting.

For over four years, our all-volunteer organization has worked to save our community money and be in the forefront of innovative technology. Our banner at the Earth Day and Energy Fair indeed summarizes quite well our purpose.

Join us on April 20 at the Earth Day and Energy Fair.

Together we will move our community forward in this important endeavor.