Going Green with the Sun in Southern Ontario

The (Solar) Power to Change

By DC Rutherford

The first part of the 2020s were a fraught few months, even before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the world. From Australian and Californian wildfires to once-in-a generation Maritime storms to Siberian heatwaves to melting glaciers, humanity was confronted with serious reminders of its effect on the planet’s well-being. Never before has the resolve to convert to greener energies and lower our individual carbon footprints been so apparent. And now is as good a time as ever to embrace the possibilities of solar power.

Governments the world over, from municipal to national to international, are implementing new green policies. But of all the green energies, why solar? Dave Wall, Commercial Sales & Project Manager at Guelph Solar, makes a compelling case for converting to solar power in Ontario.

“In Ontario, Natural Gas plants are used to provide electricity during peak times,” says Wall. “Solar power is abundant on hot, sunny, summer days when air conditioners are at full power. Every kilowatt-hour of electricity produced by solar on a hot summer day directly reduces the amount of natural gas we burn and in turn reduces greenhouse gases. Reducing greenhouse gases with the use of solar is an important part of our fight against climate change.”

But can families convert with the ease that corporations and industry can? Wall argues that “solar systems can be designed as small or as large as necessary. Of all the green energy technologies, solar is most adaptable. It remains effective, efficient and practical on a small or large scale. This means right-sized solar solutions can be deployed exactly where they are needed.”

Solar power is more accessible to the public – both residential and businesses – than ever before. Where 5, 10, 20 years ago the green energy seemed like a cumbersome investment, “The cost of solar equipment has dropped dramatically over the last 20 years. A reduction in the capital cost of a solar system means it’s feasible for more and more people to install solar and become energy independent. Wall adds, “The technology keeps advancing and being more and more efficient and practical.” 

Price is one component of such an investment; the other is the effort involved in such an undertaking. Speaking for the Southern Ontario staple – committed to solar energy since 2009 – Wall says, “Guelph Solar makes it easy. We handle all the design, permitting, and installation. Solar systems can seamlessly integrate into a building’s existing electrical infrastructure. Solar is made for your smart home.”

In fact, the challenges to conversion are the same as any change to your home or property. “The main challenge right now is regulatory. The technology is ready to serve greater needs. The regulations need to catch up. Virtual Net Metering and Third-Party Ownership are necessary to allow solar to be even more beneficial and cost effective. Despite these challenges, the solar industry continues to grow rapidly. Most homeowners can produce the power they need to run their house by installing solar on their roof.”

Wall is quick to add that energy storage is an important component of any conversation about green energy. “Tesla Powerwalls are a great way to provide green, quiet backup power with a 10-year warranty to homes and businesses. The future of backup power generation is here today.” In addition, Wall outlined his top five reasons to make the switch today.

Top 5 Reasons to Switch to Solar Power in Ontario

  1. Solar allows high-tech homeowners and business owners to be self-sufficient and produce their own power.
  2. Solar is a wise investment that pays for itself and then puts money in your pocket while fighting climate change. 
  3. Solar power reduces maintenance costs on our electricity grid by bringing the power source right to the user.
  4. Solar is a simple, reliable technology and the equipment comes with 25-year warranties.
  5. Investing in solar supports the rapidly growing Green Economy in Ontario. Guelph Solar is busier than ever as more and more people adopt solar power to help themselves, our community, and our planet.