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2009 Projects
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2011 Projects
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Our Mission
  The Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Association (MAREA) is a nonprofit organization, dedicated to informing and educating the public on renewable energy production, energy efficiency, and sustainable living through meetings, workshops, educational materials, and energy fairs.
Your membership makes these activities possible. If you can help, please
[Join MAREA]. The support is greatly appreciated and your dollars are used carefully.

MAREA Book Discussion
Thursday, January 12, 2017 6:30PM to 8:00PM
at the Kutztown Community Library, 70 Bieber Alley, Kutztown, PA

Available from Firefly in Kutztown, your intrepid local book-store or on-line
The Big Thirst
The Secret Life and Turbulent Future of Water (Free Press, 2011).
Author: Charles Fishman

“Water is the most vital substance in our lives but also
more amazing and mysterious than we appreciate..”
Charles Fishman weaves fascinating and provocative stories
while helping us to better understand our dependence
upon water and its condition for our health and well-being.
While locally blessed with abundant high-quality water, we
now find that water being exported and polluted,
jeopardizing what we once could take for granted. This
book offers us the opportunity to more fully view not just
the surface issues, but what is circulating down below and
beyond our local horizons.

Join us for an fluid discussion of this
timely and provocative book.
All are welcome!
(even if you haven't read the book)

MAREA Monthly Meetings, the More the Merrier!
Free and Open to the Public
(Always the last Tuesday of the month)

TEK Park, 9999 Hamilton Boulevard, Breinigsville, PA 18031-9300

[Download Information from Previous MAREA Presentations]
Upcoming Tuesday Night Topics
Tuesday, September 27 - 7PM

Visual Time-Lapse Journey of Planet Earth—Climate Change & Energy
Randy Sargent, Carnegie Mellon
Randy Sargent, Senior Researcher at Carnegie Mellon’s CREATE Lab, will take us on a fascinating time-lapse visual exploration of planet Earth, viewing trends built from petabytes of historical satellite imagery and numerous other dimensions of data collected from across the planet. For our group, Randy will focus on the causes and effects of climate change and explore energy--including fossil fuel extraction and the deployment of renewable energy over time across the US and across the globe. As we observe these chances geographically and over time, the presentation will explore connections between deployment rates, policy, and public opinion.

In his role at Carnegie Mellon University's CREATE Lab, Randy leads the Explorables project, developing ways to interactively explore and understand large datasets and complex systems, including climate change, pollution, resource use, and employment and economic trends.

Randy is also Visiting Scientist at Google with the Earth Engine team, where he researches and develops time-lapse explorable maps, including a 30-year explorable map of the planet which won the 2014 People's Voice Webby for Best Use of Video or Moving Image.

Prior to CMU and Google, Randy helped develop planetary rover software in NASA Ames’s Intelligent Robotics Group, and founded/co-founded two successful technology companies. Randy received his BS in Computer Science from MIT, and his MS from the MIT Media Lab, where he developed the Programmable Brick, a prototype for LEGO Mindstorms.

The meeting is Tuesday, September 27, at 7:00 at TEKPark (9999 Hamilton Boulevard, Breinigsville, PA 18031, between Kutztown and Allentown). Meetings are free and open to the public. After the meeting, please plan to stick around and chat with friends old and new. Light snacks will be served. Hope to see you there!

For questions, contact Vera Cole, veracole@comcast.net.

Tuesday, October 25 - 7PM
MAREA’s 2nd Annual Open Mic Night!

Every month our speakers tell us how impressed they are by the MAREA audience questions—smart, hard and lots of them! (We always say with a smile, we tried to warn you …) Clearly in our ranks we have loads of experience, knowledge and enthusiasm on a variety of topics. Plus, it's fun to hear from our own friends and neighbors about personal experience of shared interest.
For our October meeting, we're inviting you to take the mic, front and center! We're looking for people to share short stories about their personal experience with a renewable energy and/or sustainability project that would be of interest and use to others in the audience. It can be big or small! What went wrong, what went right? You can use slides and pictures, examples and demos, or just speak from notes.

We'll plan and publish an agenda of all speakers in advance. This is for our meeting at 7:00 on Tuesday, October 25.

If you would like to participate, please email veracole@comcast.net by Tuesday, September 20. In your email, include your name, contact info, and a brief description of what you'd like to share. (Please, no commercial presentations.) The amount of time allotted will depend on the number of speakers and nature of the topics. We are so excited to hear from you!

Remember, the criteria for these short talks are:
  related to renewable energy and/or sustainability,
  based on your personal experience,
  of interest and use to MAREA audience members, and
  not commercial.

All requests will be given full consideration. Thanks in advance for your interest in sharing! We look forward to hearing from you. Please send info to Vera, ( veracole@comcast.net ) by Tuesday, September 20. Thanks!

For questions, more information or to suggest a topic or speaker, contact:
Vera Cole: 215-258-0526 or veracole@comcast.net
[Download Information from Previous MAREA Presentations]

On Saturday, October 1, 10 AM to 3 PM, the Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Association (MAREA) is offering the opportunity to see solar energy technologies and applications in the Berks, Chester, Lehigh and Wayne County areas!

For an up-to-date listing of homes, directions, and installation details, click on the link above! If you have any questions on the solar home tour, contact MAREA Board Member Joe Matisko at [joematisko@comcast.net]

MAREA completes solar hot water project
to help needy.
MAREA's solar hot water installation at Reading's Opportunity House is complete!
This large system is expected to cut fuel costs and emissions by 50% and provide 100% of summertime hot water needs. The nonprofit Opportunity House offers round-the-clock childcare to support the working poor and provides emergency housing, three meals per day, and laundry facilities on a daily basis for needy men, women and children. The solar hot water installation (and related plumbing upgrades) was given to the shelter in full, with no cost to the Opportunity House for materials, labor or permitting. MAREA board member Tom Green, a mechanical engineer who works as Kutztown University's Director of Campus Energy Services, led the project, working closely with fellow board member Bill Hennessy to coordinate the efforts of many skilled volunteers and local companies who donated expertise, equipment and materials. More details to come on this special project and its many generous contributors!

Interested in being on the MAREA Board of Directors? Let us know!

Need a gift...but don't want to buy stuff?
If you'd like to make a donation to MAREA or buy someone a membership
as a gift, let us know and we'll handle the acknowledgement thoughtfully,
by email or paper mail, with your input.

Drop us a note at [themarea@gmail.com].
And remember, all new memberships get a free copy of the DVD, "Saving Sunshine"!

Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture

PASA 25th Annual Farming for the Future Conference
[CLICK HERE] to read more and sign up.

Upodated Schedule [HERE]

Be safe on the roof.
MAREA has two never (or very slightly) used fall-protection-in-a bucket systems that we’d like to sell at good price.
[GUARDIAN 805 Bucket] (selling for $125) and a [Gemtor VP 811] (selling for $150). Available at the TEK Park meeting. If you can’t make it, drop us a note at themarea@gmail.com.
Cash or credit is fine. We’re required to charge sales tax, but no shipping

Thinking about going solar? Resources for Homeowners & Small Businesses
"Solar Electricity for PA Homeowners" — Aug 2014 presentation slides
  If your organization would like a speaker on this topic, we’d be happy to help.
Please contact: [themarea@gmail.com]. [DOWNLOAD THE PRESENTATION]
Pennsylvania Solar Electric Installers May 2016
  Download an extensive list of solar electric installers in Pennsylvania
If you are solar installer in PA and would like to be included in this directory,
please complete the form here,
PA Solar Installer Info.
  [Marea Drectory of Solar Installers: May 2016]
On-Line Resources for those Considering Solar
  List of on-line resources to help you find an installer, estimate electricity generation, understand environmental value, consider financial aspects and more.
  [MAREA’s Recommended Resources]
SunnyMoney Residential Solar Electric Estimator
  Easy, on-line tool (updated 2014!) developed by MAREA to help Pennsylvania homeowners plan & budget for solar electric projects. Quick & accurate estimates for system size, electricity generation, savings, cost, Federal tax credit, environmental payback & more.

MAREA produces its first movie:
"Saving Sunshine"
Keeping the Lights on with Batteries and Solar Power”
In plain language, master electrician and solar installer Bruce Hankins explains AC Coupling, the combining of a grid-tied solar electric installation with an off-grid battery backup system. This technology, made possible through advanced electronics, offers benefits for all users of the entire electric system—both those with and without solar. Teachers, electricians, system installers, owners of grid-tied systems and solar advocates will find Hankins’ clear explanations in “Saving Sunshine” helpful in learning the specifics of an AC Coupled system and how it forms a local electric distribution system.
Free DVD with MAREA membership
While supplies last, all new and renewing MAREA members will receive a free copy of "Saving Sunshine, Keeping the Lights on with Batteries and Solar Power,” the 30-minute DVD produced by MAREA this year with funding from the Berks Community Foundation and distributed by Bullfrog Films. It’s terrific film, offering an interesting and easily understood explanation of the electricity grid and distribution generation, especially the role of batteries with solar. MAREA is a 501(c)3 non-profit. Donations and memberships are how we keep the lights on. Thanks for your help.
[Watch the Trailer on YouTube]
[Read More and Purchase the DVD]

Event Announcements
Perpetual economic growth is neither possible nor desirable. Growth, especially in wealthy nations, is already causing more problems than it solves.
You are invited to sign the Center for Advancement of the Steady State Economy (CASSE) position statement in support of a sustainable, steady state economy with stabilized population and consumption. For full detail, please visit [TAKE A POSITION]. At the direction of its board, MAREA signed as an organization on Feb 17, 2015.
Solar Advocates Fight Utilities Over Grid Access
  Across the country the solar industry is battling utilities over the financial details of feeding electricity from renewable resources back into the power grid.

Vera Cole, president of the Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Association, a group arguing against proposed rules in Pennsylvania that would put stricter limits on how much grid-connected solar power homeowners can produce on their property.

PA Sunshine Counts: Our Common Solar Wealth - July 2014
This report is an analysis of records obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection for more than 7,000 solar electric systems receiving PA Sunshine Rebates, with detailed findings related to cost trends, system size, installation locations, component manufacturers, and installers.

In the interest of good solar, MAREA has chosen to provide this report at no charge to members and nonmembers alike. MAREA believes strongly that the more informed voices in the conversation the better the outcome.Thank you for reading this report.
MAREA is funded entirely though memberships, events, grants and donations. Your support is needed and genuinely appreciated.

  Solar Hot Water Benefits Homeless Shelter
  To help reduce monthly expenses for Opportunity House, a multi-service organization improving the quality of life for children, families and adults who face various obstacles to independent living in the Reading area, MAREA has spearheaded a project to install a solar hot water system on their main building.
Check out the Progress: [READING EAGLE 8-1-14] [WFMZ NEWS VIDEO]

Court Affirms Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Association’s Right to Know,
Orders DEP to Release Solar Data
September 18, 2012, Kutztown, PA A renewable energy organization's request for access to information regarding solar installations receiving rebates from the $100 million state [Sunshine Program] was recently upheld by the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania. [READ THE FULL RELEASE]

Community Projects & Workshops

MAREA conducts small group workshops on practical alternative energy projects throughout the year.
[Learn from experts in the field. MAREA members receive special discount on workshops]

MAREA Educational Programs
MAREA is planning a series of two-hour workshops on possible topics that include, so far, solar electric design, solar hot water design, structural engineering for solar electric mounting systems, thermodynamics, commissioning solar electric systems, solar oven cooking, reducing electrical use in the home, all about RECs, considerations for commercial solar electricity installations, solar electricity for homeowners and wire crimping for solar installations. Whew! Let us know topics you would like covered and if there's a topic you, or someone you know, would like to instruct. Dates, locations and times will be announced soon. We expect them to be on Saturday mornings with a fee of around $45 for members. We're also nailing down plans for the next solar electric installation workshops. We'll send details as soon as they're available.
With ideas or questions, please contact
Bill Hennessy, 484-560-4666, bill@berkssolar.com.