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Apartment renters Alternative Energy option for

 
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Hi everybody, long time lurker first time poster.

being just another poor graduate student renting an apartment, I've been frustrated with how few options I have for getting cleaner energy. I'm not sure if this is normal, but there's only one energy provider in my area.I've looked at putting some solar panels on by balcony, bu that kind of thing didn't seem practical. I recently signed up with Arcadia Energy and with no extra cost they claim that half my energy bill supports clean energy costs. (For example wind). They also have a lot of promotions: for example if you use this link, you'll get 15 or 20 bucks off your first bill (and I'll get the same as well.) Alternatively you can just go check out their website and take a look for yourself. Arcadia Power

I just wanted to give other apartment renters a heads up.
 
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I would reexamine your solar options. It is fairly cheap to get a little system set up and it doesn't take much to do most of the things we do. What are your major energy uses? My portable solar system cost me a grand total of around 1500$ and with it I can run a compost tea aerator for about 72 hours, have no problem keeping cellphones/lap tops charged, can run way more lightbulbs than I'd ever need, I even found a coffee grinder I could run off of it. To make it more portable and cheaper you could sacrifice some battery capacity. You could also look into tiny wind generators for your balcony, those would be less of an obvious presence but would otherwise require lots of the same infrastructure I'd imagine and I have no idea the status of their availability or cost.
 
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stephen lowe wrote:I would reexamine your solar options. It is fairly cheap to get a little system set up and it doesn't take much to do most of the things we do. What are your major energy uses? My portable solar system cost me a grand total of around 1500$ and with it I can run a compost tea aerator for about 72 hours, have no problem keeping cellphones/lap tops charged, can run way more lightbulbs than I'd ever need, I even found a coffee grinder I could run off of it. To make it more portable and cheaper you could sacrifice some battery capacity. You could also look into tiny wind generators for your balcony, those would be less of an obvious presence but would otherwise require lots of the same infrastructure I'd imagine and I have no idea the status of their availability or cost.



What resources did you use to figure out this system?  I live in a tiny NYC apartment and would love to do this - right now I just use a solar phone charger but would love to go bigger.
 
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I have seen solar panels on rails cantilevered over a balcony in high rise apartments. They slid the ballasted bodules along the deck/floor out under the balcony rail.

You could ratchet strap them from the back right to the balcony rail facing out.

You could put them inside or outside the window.

Solar thermal collectors made to fit window openings can be made. I had two big 4x8 ones on a steep angle from ground to the window top. It sat on stakes for support on bottom and screwed into the holes left from removing the awning to make way for the collectors. You could not tell it was ever there when we left.

If you are close to the roof, and have good political skills, its just a couple pencil sized wires.


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