Renewable Energy Presence in Tulsa
Of all the things renewable energy might be missing in Oklahoma to succeed, one we might not be talking about enough is leadership. A leader in the Tulsa area for renewable energy is Francis Renewable Energy. Their plan, years ago, was to plant a flag in the desert and wait for the growth to come. Tulsa isn't known for solar, geothermal and wind power, but FRE is. They have assembled a great team with sales, design & engineering, install and financing all in house. Turnkey RE projects are their specialty.
Steve Elmore, their VP of Business Development came to present to our group earlier in July at our monthly meeting. He had some positive things to say about the future of solar in Oklahoma and he also showed a great example of affordable residential solar on a large scale. The project was a planned neighborhood development in Whisper Valley, TX. They plan to build over 5,000 track style single-family homes with solar and ground-source heat pumps integrated in each home. The district geothermal system is already in place, and allows each new home to simply plug and play. The homes are built for solar as well, with south and west facing roofs with no vents or other obstructions. Each home comes standard with the geothermal HVAC system and at least 5 kW of solar. All this at an affordable price WITHOUT utility rebates (homeowner collects the 30% federal tax credit).
The big takeaway from the project was the affordability because of the scale. Because everything is pre-planned, purchased in large quantities, and installed by solar professionals the cost is affordable even for a track home (average price $180k is competitive outside of Austin). Check out Steve's PowerPoint presentation to learn more, or check out their website for more info.
Written by Tyson R. Taussig, OREC President
Contact at (918) 771-8444 or at OREC2006@gmail.com