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News » London Solar News » April 2011

April 2011

Volume II, Issue 4

In this issue

- Welcome

- The cost of not going green

- New solar hot-water incentive

- Upcoming events

- Social networking

Happy Earth Day! Welcome to the April 2011 edition of London Solar News™, brought to you by SunTap Technologies. Today is the 41st annual Earth Day, so to celebrate our first article this month is part of a series on the costs of not going green. There is a new incentive for solar hot-water systems, plus a list of upcoming events. Show your respect for the planet and do something green today and every day of the year.

Thank you for reading, and feel free to send us an e-mail with any comments or questions at If you enjoyed this newsletter, forward it to your friends!

Sunny regards,

Tim and Mike
Founders of SunTap Technologies Inc.

P.S. Don't forget to get out and vote! Advance polls are being held today, tomorrow, and Monday. Voting day is Monday, May 2. All voter information can be found at

The cost of not going green

In celebration of Earth Day, this article is the first in a series that promotes an important message that needs to get out to the public. These articles discuss the real costs are to the average person for the use of nuclear, coal, oil, and natural gas. There are costs associated with the use of these types of fuels that we are incurring right now; however, they are often hidden, so it is not always easy to see.

· Food cost: There is a direct relationship with the price of oil and the price of food. There was a peak in 2008 when oil hit $140+ per barrel, and we are in a similar position presently. If you look at the food price-index from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the oil price-index from Energy Information Administration (EIA) you can see the direct correlation. Paul Chefurka assembled this information and the chart was published in The Prudent Investor 'blog.

· Health costs: At present, health costs are spiralling out of control, yet patient care has been deteriorating for some time now. For example, there have been increases in respiratory diseases. Dr. John Howard, in November of 2010, stated that 30% of Ontario children now require a puffer for asthma. He sites an increase in a number of other diseases as well, which he feels is attributable to environmental causes. It is estimated that the cost is $3 billion per year in Canada for healthcare related to poor air quality. Ground-water contamination from oil and natural-gas fracking (hydraulic fracturing) are also major concerns.

In March 2011, the Pickering nuclear plant discharged 73 000 litres of demineralized water into Lake Ontario. Ontario Power Generation (OPG) maintains health risks as being minimal: to tell 3 million (or more) people in the Greater Toronto Area that the water is not safe to drink would result in widespread panic.

· Insurance costs: As greenhouse gasses increase globally, so do weather-related incidents. The result is higher insurance premiums to cover these costs, the average person paying out of their own pocket, or we all pay through taxes if funding is from federal disaster relief. These events don’t have to be catastrophic in nature, though: for example, locally in London, Ontario, one restoration company stated that recently it had 60 cases of ice damming on residential rooftops, whereas the normal is about 10 for one winter season. The constant freezing and thawing cycle of our current weather is to blame - gone are the days when snow and ice would freeze in December and remain frozen until February.

The constant freezing and thawing cycle of our current weather is also increasing the deterioration of our roads and bridges. Again, costs are either incurred through higher taxes, not to mention vehicle repairs.

· Loss of natural habitat and wildlife: Although difficult to always associate a dollar value to the loss of flora, fauna, and landscape, the David Suzuki Foundation does a fantastic job at pinpointing real costs to losing natural spaces and the inhabitants who live there.

Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO):

Energy Information Administration (EIS):

The Prudent Investor 'blog:

David Suzuki Foundation:

New solar hot-water incentive

The SaveOnEnergy Retrofit Program has a new incentive for installing solar domestic water-heating systems to displace an electric water-heater. The program for solar hot water is open to commercial locations, and has not been expanded to residences yet. Customers will receive $320 per square metre of collector area (multiplied by the performance factor as determined by CSA International).

Visit the SaveOnEnergy Web site here:

Upcoming events

PostCarbon London's solar thermal workshop #2 - May 4, 2011

The first workshop, including a presentation by Tim Waddingham of SunTap Technologies, went very well on April 14. The basics of solar water heating were discussed.

The second workshop, taking place on May 4, will be more technical in scope. Topics to be covered will include getting "solar ready", maintenance, contracts, troubleshooting, and costing. These presentations will address information not typically found on the Internet.

When: Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at 7:00 PM
Where: Richards Memorial United Church - 360 Edgeworth Avenue, London

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