City of Summerside is still exploring new renewable energy ideas. Electric cars hold great promise for the area, as do the ceramic heaters and solar. And they are working on their own storage solutions. And that's what I love most, they are working on solutions, not focusing on the problems....or moving forward instead of saying, 'we can't this and we can't that." Love their positive 'can do' attitude....here is hoping their attitude spreads across the Island like a warm blanket.
Biggest barrier to adopting renewable energy is financing...but Steve Howard at Renewable Lifestyles is working on the solution with Solar Island Electric Inc. intending to offer "Solar Leases" and RRSP investment opportunities to Islanders.
When the group was asked about their top three things to see happen on PEI to 'make 100% renewable energy possible" several answers were clearly priority:
- Electric cars to help move away from fossil fuels, possible storage capacity, and is a real possibility
- Policy changes that work at all government levels or tight energy policy that includes renewables, communities get involved and share resources.
- Distributed storage is needed and being worked on
- Education renewable energy, false information or lack of information
- Need incentives for developers to adopt renewable energy for buildings, businesses, etc.
- Co-operation at all levels of government
- Mandate to take advantage of solar passive (Eco Park coming to Summerside to use this in building)
- DSM Demand Side Management where utility manages demand
Each meeting gives a little different view of the opportunities and challenges to PEI going 100% Renewable Energy with each discussion giving a great base to build on.