Herb Bartel grew up on a 340-acre farm in Kansas. He later left Kansas and the farm was rented out for conventional agriculture. When he later returned to the farm with his wife Pat, they began using organic farming methods.
THE PROBLEM: CONCERN FOR CLIMATE CHANGE & FUTURE GENERATIONS
Herb became very concerned about the climate changes he observed. Herb explains, “I live on the farm where I grew up, and we have experienced things we didn’t have when I was growing up, such as 6-inch rains and extremes in temperatures.”
As a result, Herb and Pat were very concerned that atmospheric concentrations of CO2 had reached 400 parts per million (ppm) and the effects on climate change could negatively affect future generations. As Herb puts it, “What gives us the right to take from the next generation?”
Herb and Pat started looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint by exploring things they could do on their own. Using clean solar energy was an ideal fit for the couple.
THE SOLUTION: GROUND-MOUNTED SOLAR SYSTEMS
Herb and Pat are now the proud owners of two 12-panel solar electric systems. “The first one was put in 2009 and it has been operating faithfully ever since,” say Herb. “The second one is about 3 years old. On good sunshine months, we put in about 300 kilowatt hours into the grid over what we use.”
Because Herb and Pat have a large property and the house is partially shaded, King Solar designed the system to be mounted on the ground. This makes it much easier for Herb and Pat to clear snow off the panels, increasing the winter energy production of the system.
“With them being on the ground, I can brush them off and don’t have to wait for the snow to melt,” says Herb. “Even with snow on the ground, they have peak production.”
Although they were largely motivated by benefitting the environment, Herb says he does enjoy the cost savings from the system. Both solar electric systems were designed and installed by King Solar. Herb and Pat were very satisfied with the work performed on both projects. The couple enjoyed working with the King Solar team; in Herb’s words, “Mark is really great to work with.”
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Mark did exactly what he said he’d do and sadly that’s a declining characteristic these days. Professional, friendly, on time, answered all my questions. I couldn’t anticipate a better experience.