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Founded in 1979, Solar Oregon is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit membership organization providing public education and community outreach to encourage Oregonians to choose solar energy.
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Open House in Beaverton

Dan and Kendal McDonald will hold an open house on June 5th to encourage their fellow community members to participate in the Solar Beaverton Residential Home Program.

Open House in Beaverton

The McDonald's Roof With Their 4.95 kW Array

Twenty years before the city initiated the Solar Beaverton Residential Home Program, Dan and Kendal McDonald installed a solar water heater at their Highland Hills home.  That rooftop thermal solar system has served the family well and is still going strong.  Then in 2009, the McDonalds decided to add a 4.95kW photovoltaic (electric) system on their 2300 sq ft all-electric house.  Because their residence is situated perfectly for solar (rated with a Total Solar Resource Fraction of 93%), it seemed the right thing to do. 

As early adopters and advocates of clean and renewable energy, the McDonalds want to help their neighbors save money, generate clean electricity, reduce carbon emissions, and create jobs in their community. To this end, they are opening up their home in order to show others how to live with solar energy.  A Solar Open House event is a great opportunity to view a home with an active solar installation.  Visitors will be able to view the components of the McDonald’s two solar systems and hear from the homeowners in an informal and neighborly venue about what it is like to live with solar.

McDonald’s solar electric array consists of 22 Solon panels, and was installed by SunWize Technologies.  Dan says, “We will average about 5900 kWh per year. If the cost of electricity doubles in 10 years we will pay for our system in less than 9 years. Almost as good as our solar hot water system which I think has paid for itself twice over. Since we are all-electric, it will never be able to generate all the energy we need, but it has made a huge dent in our electric bill, especially in the summer.”

Dan McDonald is one of Solar Oregon’s Solar Ambassadors.*  He is a graduate of the UO Sustainability Leadership Certificate Program and currently works as a senior program manager for Portland Energy Conservation, Inc. (PECI).  For over 30 years, non-profit PECI has been developing and delivering innovative energy efficiency projects, programs, and research to help create a new clean energy economy.

What:    Solar Open House – free to the public; wine and cheese will be provided

Who:     Dan & Kendal McDonald – Solar Ambassadors

When:  Sunday, June 5th  between the hours of 3:00-5:00pm 

Where:  7720 SW Forsythia Place, Beaverton, OR  97008

Why:     To support the Solar Beaverton Residential Home Program. The goal of the program is to encourage residents of Beaverton to install solar technologies such as Solar Photovoltaic (PV) systems, solar attic fans, and solar thermal systems on their home. The purpose of this program is to help identify and overcome barriers to the adoption of solar technologies by providing the resources necessary to help residents overcome existing monetary and logistical hurdles through education and support.


* What is a Solar Ambassador?

Ambassadors are citizens who have installed solar on their residence who want to tell others about the benefits of living with solar.

The Solar Ambassador program is a public outreach program designed to work with motivated volunteers across Oregon. These volunteers communicate the excitement of Solar Oregon’s mission and provide vital information about solar in their local communities.  As active members of Solar Oregon, Solar Ambassadors have a special relationship with the organization. They are delegated as representatives and earn this exalted status by their volunteerism and achievement in support of solar energy in their community. Ambassadors are the go-to people in their neighborhood and as such they are expected to serve as examples and promote solar and renewable energy choices. We believe by working with Solar Oregon and their own neighborhood, they will help to create a more cohesive solar community.

We’re now looking for Ambassadors state-wide to serve in 2011-2012.  Please contact Solar Oregon if you wish to participate.

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