Transcript: Climate Watch Shorts: The view from the roof | May 19, 2017

(music plays)

A black spinning globe appears next to the caption "TVO Climate Change Shorts."

A caption reads "Nam Kiwanuka. Climate Watch Shorts host."

Nam has curly brown hair and wears glasses, a blue sweater, a black blazer and a long printed terracotta and red scarf.

Nam says WELCOME TO CLIMATE
WATCH SHORTS
WHERE WE EXAMINE THE LOCAL
IMPACT OF CLIMATE CHANGE.
SOLAR ENERGY IS
CHEAPER THAN EVER,
BUT A POPULAR PROGRAM
THAT SUPPORTS IT
IS COMING TO AN END.
WE VISIT A JOBSITE
WITH SOLAR INSTALLER
SEAN FLANAGAN TO
FIND OUT MORE.

(music plays)

A caption reads "Warsaw, Ontario."

A clip shows two men unpacking and installing solar panels.

The caption changes to "Sean Flanagan. Director, Flanagan and Sun Inc."

Sean is in his late forties, with short wavy gray hair and a shadow of a beard. He wears jeans and a green T-shirt under a gingham blue shirt.

Sean says SOLAR
IS REALLY EXCITING
BECAUSE THERE'S ENOUGH SUN
THAT HITS THE PLANET EARTH
IN ONE HOUR THAT COULD
PROVIDE ALL THE ENERGY NEEDS
FOR THE ENTIRE
PLANET FOR ONE YEAR.
THE MOST APPEALING ASPECTS
OF SOLAR FOR PEOPLE TODAY
ARE THE LONGEVITY OF THE
SOLAR PANELS THEMSELVES:
THEY'RE VERY
RESILIENT,
THEY'LL LAST 25
YEARS OR LONGER.
THE PRICE OF SOLAR
HAS COME DOWN
AN INCREDIBLE AMOUNT
IN THE LAST TEN YEARS.
IT'S ONE-TENTH THE PRICE OF
WHAT IT WAS TEN YEARS AGO.
IT CAN BE A GOOD RETURN ON
INVESTMENT FOR PEOPLE.
THEY CAN ACTUALLY
MAKE MONEY
BY INSTALLING SOLAR
ON THEIR ROOF
AS WELL AS HELPING THE
ENVIRONMENT AT THE SAME TIME.
ONCE THE SOLAR PANELS
HAVE BEEN MANUFACTURED,
THEY ARE CARBON FREE, SO
THERE ARE NO CARBON EMISSIONS
FROM THE SOLAR PANELS ONCE
THEY HAVE BEEN INSTALLED.
AND THERE'S ALSO
SOMETHING TO BE SAID
ABOUT GETTING POWER
FROM THE SUN.
YOU MIGHT EXPECT THAT WITH
THE ISSUE OF CLIMATE CHANGE
BECOMING MORE PREVALENT
AND MORE PEOPLE ARE AWARE
OF CLIMATE CHANGE, THAT
WOULD CAUSE AN INCREASE
IN PEOPLE SIGNING UP FOR
THE microFIT PROGRAM
AND PUTTING SOLAR
ON THEIR ROOF; BUT,
IN FACT, I HAVEN'T
SEEN THAT IN MY BUSINESS.
MOST PEOPLE ARE
INVESTING IN SOLAR
BECAUSE THEY WANT
TO MAKE MONEY.
THEY MIGHT ALSO DO IT BECAUSE
THEY LIKE THE IDEA OF IT
AND IT'S GOOD FOR
THE ENVIRONMENT.
BUT THE MAIN
MOTIVATION FOR PEOPLE
SEEMS TO BE THE
INVESTMENT.
THE PROJECT WE'RE
WORKING ON TODAY
IS A 10-KILOWATT
microFIT SYSTEM.
EACH SOLAR PANEL IS
320 WATTS OF POWER
IN FULL SUN.
THERE ARE 32 SOLAR
PANELS IN TOTAL.
THE SOLAR PANELS GET
ATTACHED TO THE ROOF
WITH A RACKING SYSTEM.
ALL THAT ENERGY WILL BE
PRODUCED AND SET DOWN
TO SOMETHING CALLED
AN INVERTER.
THE INVERTER WILL CHANGE THE
ELECTRICITY THAT THE SOLAR
PANELS PRODUCE TO WHAT IS
ACCEPTED BY THE GRID.
THE PRICE OF INSTALLING
microFIT SYSTEMS
HAS DROPPED SIGNIFICANTLY
SINCE THE PROGRAM'S INCEPTION.
INITIALLY A 10-KILOWATT
SYSTEM WOULD COST
SOMETHING LIKE
50,000 TO 60,000 DOLLARS;
WHEREAS NOW, IT'S BETWEEN
25,000 AND 30,000 DOLLARS
FOR THE SAME SYSTEM.
INITIALLY A HOMEOWNER
COULD MAKE ANYWHERE
FROM 8,000 TO
10,000 DOLLARS A YEAR
FROM A 10-KILOWATT
SYSTEM; WHEREAS NOW,
THEY'LL MAKE AROUND 3,000
TO 3,200 DOLLARS A YEAR
FROM THAT SAME
SYSTEM.
AND THAT'S BECAUSE AT THE
BEGINNING OF THE PROGRAM
THEY WERE PAYING 80.2 CENTS
A KILOWATT HOUR,
WHEREAS NOW
THEY'RE PAYING
28.8 CENTS PER
KILOWATT HOUR.
THE microFIT PROGRAM
WILL BE ENDING IN 2017.
THEY'RE ONLY GOING TO BE
ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS
UP UNTIL THE END
OF THE YEAR.
THE IDEA WAS TO
TRANSITION FROM microFIT
TO SOMETHING CALLED
NET METERING.
AND NET METERING IS WHERE
THE HOMEOWNER CAN USE
THE SOLAR ELECTRICITY
THEMSELF, AND IF THEY HAVE
ANY EXTRA PRODUCED IT
GOES OUT ONTO THE GRID.
GIVEN THAT CLIMATE CHANGE
IS A REAL PROBLEM,
WE NEED TO MODIFY
OUR BEHAVIOUR.
WE NEED TO STOP
EMITTING CARBON
AND START INSTALLING
MORE RENEWABLE ENERGY
SUCH AS WIND AND SOLAR.

(music plays)

A caption reads "tvo.org/climatewatch."

Watch: Climate Watch Shorts: The view from the roof