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Maryland Energy Administration Director Joins National Solar Tour

by Kaymie Owen, CMP, Communications Manager

September 22, 2016 – The Maryland Energy Administration’s Director, Mary Beth Tung, will visit two solar powered, energy efficient homes in Howard and Ann Arundel counties as part of the National Solar Tour on Saturday, October 1, 2016.

“Maryland is a national leader in renewable energy technology especially in the residential sector.  The National Solar Tour provides an opportunity to see how Maryland families have adopted solar in their homes. I am eager to see how Maryland households are using solar to their homes,” said Mary Beth Tung, Director, Maryland Energy Administration.

“Many home and building energy efficient measures cost effective technologies that can benefit the environment, move us closer to energy security and protect against power outages,” Tung explained. The metro DC tour, organized by national and local arms of the American Solar Energy Society (ASES), and the Sierra Club highlights investments in the clean energy economy. Renewable energy can help homeowners reduce their monthly energy bills

The National Solar Tour is the world’s largest grassroots solar event.  Now in its 21st year, this coalition of over 5,500 home and business owners, volunteers, solar installers, public officials and non-profit organizations conduct nationwide open house tours of their energy efficient and solar-powered buildings.

The two featured homes that will be visited by the Maryland Energy Administration Director include a farm house in Harwood, MD and a mod ranch in Ellicott City, MD (home specs below).

4800 Solomon’s Island Road, Harwood, MD, approximate arrival time at this location by Director Tung is 10:30 am
Completed in 2011, this off-grid home feature all the comforts of a typical home yet boasts a 10 kW photovoltaic system. Heating is primarily provided by a 9 flat plate panel solar thermal collector and radiant floor system. On cloudy days, energy generation is supplemented by a two-ton geothermal heat pump and a Navien tankless water heater. Cooling is accomplished through a unique geothermal in-floor radiant cooling system aided by two air handlers. All heating and cooling systems are connected via automated optimizing controls. The home’s frame is timber, SIP panel construction with R-44 walls, passive solar engineering, an insulated precast foundation, and Serious/Alpen quad pane windows. A plug-in electric hybrid vehicle charging station was installed in 2012 and is available to visitors.

2814 Montclair Drive, Ellicott City, MD, approximate arrival time at this location by Director Tung is 12:00 pm
This 1950s ranch house has solar PV, solar hot water, a cupola/solar chimney plus solar powered daylight tubes, attic fan, sidewalk lights and south facing energy efficient windows. It also features two highly efficient Energy Star mini-split heat pumps (26-SEER), a fireplace insert woodstove, exterior insulation finishing system (EIFS), CFL/LED lighting, recycled glass kitchen counter tops and recycled floor tiles in the foyer and basement. In the yard there are two rain gardens, permeable walkways, three rain barrels and two compost piles, a 1,000 gallon cistern, extensive food forest and native meadow planting. There is also an aquaponics system in the basement.

Maryland Energy Administration
The Maryland Energy Administration’s (MEA) mission is to promote affordable, secure, and safe energy while maintaining energy independence, sustainability, and reliability through innovative and effective policies, programs, technologies, and financing mechanisms. The Maryland Energy Administration advises the Governor on directions, policies and changes in the various segments of the energy market. As demand/supply competition, technological innovations, and policy changes by the federal government cause major changes in market sensitive energy sectors (e.g., petroleum markets, gas deregulation, and emerging competition in the electric utilities sector), State government must be in position to respond to new opportunities, as well as adjust to any potential dangers. For more information about the Maryland Energy Administration, visit www.energy.maryland.gov .