SEI Newsletter
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Issue 78 - October 2009
SEI Upcoming PV Workshops!

There's still room in some upcoming PV workshops! No matter what type of PV workshop you're looking for - grid-tied, advanced, for developing countries, or even in Spanish - SEI has something for you. Check out the opportunities below, and register soon as spaces fill up fast!

SEI Welcomes New Staff!
SEI's new Solar In the Schools coordinator (on left) with teacher Brandee Livingston
SEI is ecstatic to have a new marketing director, April E. Clark. April, who uses her middle initial to stand out in the sea of April Clarks in the world, is a trained journalist, weekly newspaper columnist and ad libitum stand-up comic.

SEI would also like to welcome Noah Davis, the newest coordinator for the Solar In the Schools program. Noah believes that nothing is more important than teaching today’s youth how to deal with tomorrow’s energy challenges — except maybe having fun while teaching today’s youth how to deal with tomorrow’s energy challenges. A perfect fit for SEI's SIS program!

Offshore Wind - Time for a Market Take-off?
The offshore wind market is finding its feet across the globe, with major projects completed and under construction in the UK, swiftly gathering momentum for renewables under the Obama administration in the United States, increasing focus and investment in China, and new projects planned in Germany, Belgium and other European countries.

From virtually nothing in 2000, the industry today can boast 1.5 GW of installed offshore wind capacity, with an additional 1.5 GW currently under construction. Read the entire about the growth of offshore wind at

Appropriate Technology: Meth Lab and Bicibombas
If you think of manure when you see the words "meth lab" you're definitely in the appropriate technology field. SEI's partner in Costa Rica, Rancho Mastatal, recently put their methane biodigestor to use. The biodigestor takes humanure and converts it into methane gas for cooking. A sign on the toilet that feeds the "meth lab" says "By defecating here, you are helping the Ranch produce gas and fertilizer while reducing your impact on Mother Earth."

Meanwhile, in Ecuador the Rio Muchacho Organic Farm now has a solution to their water pumping problems, through pedal power. Participants in SEI's workshop recently built a bicycle powered water pump at the farm, to help bring water from the cistern up to elevated tanks where it will be fed by gravity to showers around the farm.

Donate to Honor the Earth and Win LED Lights
SEI is helping our partner Honor the Earth raise money for the amazing work they do. HTE is a Native-led organization founded by Winona LaDuke to create awareness and support for Native environmental issues.

A donation of at least $50 to HTE's programs (which include solar and wind energy for Native American reservations) will enter you into a drawing to win a 12 volt LED lighting system from Our Sun Solar. This simple and beautiful system contains a solar module, controller, battery and bamboo light fixtures. Click here to donate. Your name gets put into the drawing for each $50 donation you make. Donations must be received by December 15.

If you win the drawing you can also make a tax-deductible donation of the lighting system (a $300 value) back to SEI to be used for a project in a rural area of the developing world.

350: The Most Important Number in the World
According to Bill McKibben 350 is the most important number in the world. Any amount of carbon in the atmosphere greater than 350 parts per million is not compatible with the planet on which civilization developed, or to which life on Earth is adapted. We're already past 350 - we're at 387 - and rising.

Bill McKibben's organization is calling on people around the world to organize an action on October 24 incorporating the number 350 at an iconic place in their community, and then upload a photo of their event to website. They'll collect these images from around the world and deliver them to the media and world leaders.

Upcoming Events

International Day of Climate Action
October 24 - Worldwide is calling on people around the world to organize an action on October 24 incorporating the number 350 at an iconic place in their community, and then upload a photo of their event to the website.

Solar Power International
October 25 - 27 - Anaheim, CA

The largest solar conference and expo in the US, with 750 exhibitors and over 20,000 attendees. Come visit SEI in booth 435!

6th Annual Small Wind Conference
June 15 - 16, 2010 - Stevens Point, WI

The premier event for small wind-electric system designers and installers, and for those involved in sales, specification, management, funding, and permitting of small wind systems.

Your Generosity Ensures our Success!
Your Generosity Ensures our Success! SEI workshop SEI would like to welcome new members! As a membership-based non-profit, SEI's members are the heart of our organization and allow us to continue our educational programs. SEI Staff are passionate about the work we do and membership dues help sustain our renewable energy endeavors.

Please join us! Membership benefits include (depending on membership level) discounts on workshops and a one year subscription to either Home Power or E magazine.

Click here for details on how to become an SEI member.

To all SEI members...SEI sends thanks!
In This Issue
SEI Upcoming Workshops

SEI Welcomes New Staff

Offshore Wind - Time for a Market Take-off?

Appropriate Technology: Meth Labs and Bicibombas

Donate to Honor the Earth and Win LED Lights

350: The Most Important Number in the World

Upcoming Events

Your Generosity Ensures our Success!

Featured Workshop
Sustainable Community Development: Renewable Energy for Rural Villages
November 7 - 14, NICARAGUA

Learn about renewables for the developing world in the developing world..

Hands-On Workshops

View all hands-on workshops >

Grid-Tied PV Systems
October 26 - 30, Bend, OR
November 9 - 13, Honolulu, HI
December 7 - 11, Raleigh, NC

Electric Vehicle Conversion
October 26 - 31, Guemes Island, WA

Advanced Photovoltaics
November 16 - 20, Honolulu, HI

Online Courses

View all Online Courses >

Please register early. These courses WILL fill.

PV Design Online
November 2 - Dec 13, Online

Advanced PV Online
November 2 - Dec 13, Online

Building for the Future
January 18 - Feb 8, Online

International Workshops

Sign up early to reserve your seat.

Iinstalación y conceptos de diseño de sistemas solares fotovoltaicos
Nov 30 - Dec 4, PUERTO RICO

Solar Electricity for the Developing World
January 2 - 10, 2010 Rancho Mastatal, COSTA RICA

Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency in Cuba
April 2 - 11, 2010 CUBA

Browse Workshops
International - Rural Development

Micro-Hydro Power

Renewable Energy for Educators

Solar Electricity (Photovoltaics)

Solar Thermal

Sustainable Building

Sustainable Transportation

Wind Power

Women's Workshops

SEI welcomes new business members:

Bruce Freeman
Southern SunPower
Electrical Design Build
Capilano Electric Ltd.

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PO Box 715 Carbondale, CO 81623
39845 Mathews Lane Paonia, CO 81428
970-963-8855 - fax: 970-963-8866 -

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