Self Sufficient in the City

In our world of waste it seems unlikely to consider being sustainable in an urban setting. Our yards are small and our houses are generally close together. This seems to limit our options.

Depending on the position of your home you may be surprised to learn that you can be entirely self-sufficient even if you live in the city. The roof of your home may be able to support an array of technologies that could literally take you off the grid.

Practically every green technology available can be mounted on your roof. From Solar Power to Wind, Hot water to Air conditioning could all fit on that most unused of spaces.

Screen shot 2015-03-19 at 10.03.07 AMThere are several projects under way in cities around the world utilizing this very concept.  The footprint of your home is wasted space if your not utilizing your roof.

A single 225 watt Solar Power Panel takes up about 18 square feet and a single Solar Hot Water Panel is about the same size. If your home is only 30 x 30 that still gives you 900 square feet of roof space or 450 square feet of usable space on the sun side of your home.

A typical set up for both Solar Power and Hot Water would utilize only about one third of that space. If you were to also conduct a wind survey and find that you could also utilize a wind generator or two you would still only be approaching the half  mark.

While the process of taking your home off the grid in an urban setting can be full of trials when it comes to permits and approvals from building inspectors,  homeowners associations and the like, the rewards far exceed the headaches.

Not only will you qualify for tax credits from your state and the federal government, you will no longer have monthly utility bills to worry about. There are also a variety of programs available to help with funding your project.

Imagine, if you will, the next time it’s snowing, the wind is howling and the temperature has bottomed out, the power fails. Your neighbors scramble for candles and warm clothes. You, on the other hand, continue to watch the movie that is playing, in your well lit, warm and cozy home.