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PV Power in the Dorm

March/April 2006
This article originally appeared in the March/April 2006 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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March 02, 2006
        Although I consider myself to be an environmentally concerned individual, when I entered the University of Vermont last year, I had no experience in renewable energy, or even a rudimentary knowledge of electrical wiring.And yet, one month into my first year of college life, I found myself sitting in the second row of my economics lecture with my Powerbook G4, credit card in hand, purchasing a do-it-yourself solar-energy setup from Sundancesolar.com. The decision to construct a small-scale renewable energy system had only been made about a day and a half before, when I bought wind energy credits to offset the approximate electrical usage in my suite of six freshmen students. I recalled a conversation I had had a month prior with the regional director for Smartpower, an organization that was pioneering a renewable energy purchase program for municipalities in Connecticut. While purchasing credits was one way to invest in renewable energy, he said it was infinitely preferable for municipalities to put together systems that would generate energy locally.My mind began brainstorming the possibilities. What if I created a small-scale renewable energy system at my dorm?

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