Solar installation

Solar installation

EcoAction Partners was pleased with a good turnout at last week’s Action Roundtable featuring Tyler Mize of Alternative Power Enterprises AND Chris Binner, Local Realtor. We discussed solar basics and got to see how beautiful and functional a solar-powered green home can look.

Colorado is blessed with lots of sunshine: between 200 and 300 clear days annually. The National Renewable Energy Lab’s map of the country shows southwestern Colorado as a prime place for solar power. At an earlier Roundtable one solar expert noted that Germany has become a leader in solar installations and applications. Policies and regulations have aided this transformation – and all that in an area that receives about as much sun as Seattle! With that in mind solar here in the sun-kissed Southwest makes all the sense in the world.

At the workshop, folks asked Tyler great questions about system longevity, pay back periods, basic costs, rebates and much more. Chris then took over to help us profile a solar-powered, green home.

Hastings Mesa solar home

Hastings Mesa solar home

Built in 2009, this self-sustaining custom home on seven acres is completely off the grid. The materials used are mostly made of recycled content and natural products. Green features include solar power, highly insulative rastra block walls, American Clay wall finishes, bamboo floors and recycled blue jeans insulation. An attached greenhouse provides a place to grow food and also provides heat for the house.

Slow Money – Western Slope: A very quick recap of the Slow Money gathering near Carbondale on Sept 1 to close out this blog.

I was honored to be at the same table as Woody Tasch (Slow Money Alliance), Michael Brownlee (Transition Colorado), Marco Vangelisti (Slow Money N. California) and Gary Nabhan (author and local food movement activist) as we discussed how “investing as if food, farms and fertility matter.” Looks like there is momentum in the Roaring Fork Valley to form a group. Here in Telluride we have a very small Slow Money Chapter and the San Miguel Growing Concerns investment club has begun.

Not familiar with Slow Money? Visit, read the principles and contact me for more information about how you can be involved in our region.

Connecting local dollars with local food and farm projects is a win-win that benefits the entire Telluride region.

I can be reached at or 970-728-1340.

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