Total Area Required to Power the US on Solar Energy. Northern Texas Panhandle.

Real Estate Investment on the Path to Energy Independence

by Christopher B. Mihm, Innovacion Solar

Solar and Real Estate have a symbiotic relationship. It’s simple, we install solar on new and existing homes. Well there was that sailboat thing…the first Sailboat in Cabo, configured to operate 100% on solar.  By and large, solar is installed on residential and commercial real estate.

The sheer economics drive the multitude of homeowners to purchase solar. The payback in Cabo is a rapid 3-4 years simply because electric rates are 3 times more than most people pay in the states.

While the economics is convincing, I am lovingly dedicated to my work in solar because of the environmental impact driven by cutting edge technology that subsides our dependence on fossil fuels.

Many people invest in real estate and are unsure how give back to the
community. Choosing solar as a modular addition to your new or existing
home is a direct eco-benefit to the tip of the Baja. Where we use dirty
diesel to produce dirty electricity in thermoelectric power plants.   

Solar energy in Los Cabo has grown immensely over the last 4 years,
made feasible by CFE and HOA acceptance. The first net meter, which]
allows solar energy to be sold back to the grid, was installed in 2009
by Innovacion Solar, the longest local standing solar company, based in
Cabo San Lucas.

Cabo is a unique location for a Solar Company because multi-million dollar real estate is built off grid, where in fact there are no services. No Energy, No Water…No Problem.

Energy storage via batteries is imperative for an OFF GRID home solar system. The panels themselves must produce sufficient energy to power the entire house as well as generate adequate energy to charge the batteries so the home has energy at night and in the event of a cloudy day.

For many OFF GRID homes the solar system is installed during construction phases so that the building team has on call energy required to complete the home.

OFF GRID homes are primarily energy autonomous and marginally rely on non-renewable resources like natural gas. Many OFF GRID homes employ solar water heaters, solar pool heaters and pool pumps in addition to an OFF GRID solar system.

THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS

In fact, many homeowners who have access to electrical services want to reduce their dependence on the local utility by adding maintenance-free home battery backup, or a hybrid solar system. The term hybrid refers to dual-use of the grid as well as the solar battery backup.  Hybrid technology is a powerful trend, breeding its way into the global solar market.

Spearheading this movement in the US, is Elon Musk. CEO of Tesla. Musk is a revolutionary man. Perhaps you have seen the presentation where Musk demonstrates the size of area needed to operate the entire US solely on solar panels. (see photo)

While we are also reminded that most of these solar panels will be installed on existing rooftops, the space demonstrated consumes only a small square in the Northern Texas Panhandle. That’s it.

Within that space the batteries required for the US to operate 100% on solar are depicted by a small dot. This is the raw concept of hybrid solar technology bridging the gap between peak solar and peak electricity demand, with the goal to use your photons when you need them.

HOW DOES A HYBRID SOLAR SYSTEM WORK IN CABO?     

We have more frequent blackouts and brownouts in Los Cabos than in the States. Most people are unaware that when the electrical grid fails a typical ON GRID Solar System shuts down, with Hybrid Solar a homeowner never even knows the power is out.





During Hurricane Odile, I was personally out of energy for a little over 20 nights. We all have heard the stories  - no fans, no ACs, no nada. CFE did a great job supporting our community and eventually restoring energy.

This is important because after Odile many solar clients wanted to explore Hybrid Solar and reduce their dependency on the CFE grid. The first step is for the homeowner to determine what appliances they want to operate when the grid fails. Many clients simply want to have a fan, a fridge, and a few lights, while other clients decide to back up their entire property with a home battery system.  After the homeowner determines what appliances they want to power, an emergency load center must be designed that will provide power to those appliances in the event of grid failure.

Innovation is leading us down a path of energy independence where reliance on fossil fuels to power our homes is obsolete.

By Christopher B. Mihm, Innovacion Solar , Contact him for more information at 624-122-6562, ChrisM@InnovacionSolar.Mx