Green Power Switch News
Solar-generating home a first for JEA
The home of Scott and Sherry Parkhurst is a model of energy efficiency and the first residence in Madison County, Tenn. to have a grid-tied solar power array. The 4,450-square-foot Victorian cottage is equipped with a 2.3 kW photovoltaic system composed of 11 Sharp solar panels and an inverter by Solar Electric. The solar system generates electricity and sells the power back to Jackson Energy Authority (JEA) under TVA’s Green Power Switch Generation Partners program. The solar system offers the benefit of lowering the homeowner’s electric bills, while reducing carbon emissions and allowing the homeowner to be less dependent upon other forms of electric generation. In addition to installing solar, the Parkhursts took steps to insulate their new home with Bio-Seal soy-based expandable foam insulation. The foam is sprayed into their exterior walls and rafters to establish an envelope of insulation. This type of insulation allowed the homeowner to use a smaller HVAC system to reduce energy costs. To heat the home, the Parkhursts chose radiant floor heat. Hot water from a gas water heater flows through “pex” tubing on all three floors. As a backup to radiant heat, a SEER 19 heat pump was installed. “This is the most comfortable, dust-free, energy-efficient home we have ever been in,” says Scott Parkhurst. “Over the summer, when the temperatures soared, we maintained constant set temperatures on the second floor.” The Parkhursts chose other ways to save energy in their home by purchasing high-efficiency Energy Star-rated appliances, energy-efficient windows and doors, low water use commodes, and using compact fluorescent lightbulbs.
TVA currently has 45 generation partner systems operating in the Valley. For more information about TVA’s Green Power Switch Generation Partners program, go to www.gpsgenpartners.com. For more energy-saving tips, visit www.energyright.com.