2019 Workshops and Resources
In the Fall and Winter of 2019, the Community Environmental Council (CEC) partnered with city and county energy staff, local solar and energy companies, and community leaders to host three energy storage workshops in Santa Barbara, Montecito, and Ventura in response to a growing interest in solar-paired battery systems.
At the workshops, participants gained insight into the technical, financial, and safety considerations of tying batteries to solar energy as a backup power source. The first hour featured a series of speakers from public utilities, nonprofits, energy storage companies, and city or county energy updates. Afterward, homeowners connected with local energy companies to discuss products and services.
To view videos from the workshops and learn more about home energy storage, please see the following links:
- Santa Barbara Livestream Video. (Captures the full presentation of all speakers)
- Montecito Livestream Video. (Captures the full presentation of all speakers)
- CEC’s Home Energy Storage Webpage. (We will continue to update with additional resources as they become available)
CEC is planning to hold similar workshops in 2020. If you are interested in learning more or have ideas for the event, please contact April Price [email protected].
What is Home Energy Storage and Why Use It?
Solar-paired energy storage is a powerful tool to keep your home or business running when the grid goes down instead of relying on fossil-fuel-powered generators. There are also climate benefits of energy storage when it is used daily. There are many solar and battery solutions that allow you to store your solar electricity in your battery and then use that electricity every evening when the sun goes down. By using your stored energy, you avoid purchasing electricity from the grid in the early evening, when grid electricity is the most expensive and most dependent on natural gas combustion. Batteries can also be used for backup purposes.
Energy Resilience in the Face of Power Outages
In the fall and winter of 2019, thousands of people lost electricity due to threats from fires. “With the prospect of long term power outages, we have seen a big uptick in energy storage inquiries,” stated April Price, CEC’s Renewable Energy Program Manager. “We want to help people see that generators aren’t the only option; solar-paired batteries are a safe, easy-to-use power backup solution.”
Former head of the Santa Barbara County Office Of Energy Management Rob Lewin said, “Whether due to climate change-induced disasters or public safety power shutoffs, our electrical grid is vulnerable. Now is the time to create clean, reliable backup power supplies to protect our families, our businesses, and our communities.” Lewin spoke about the importance of energy resilience at the Santa Barbara workshop on November 13.