The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Wondering If Solar Is Right for You? Just Ask Google's 'Project Sunroof'
Ever wonder how much would you'd save by installing solar panels? Google's new Project Sunroof will not only answer that question, it'll also let you know if your roof is right for panels and how to get them installed—simply by entering your address.
— Google (@google) August 17, 2015
The project taps into Google's trove of location and business data. By using the company's mapping and computing resources, Project Sunroof calculates how much sun hits your roof, the angle of your roof and sun-blocking obstructions such as trees and chimneys.
Project Sunroof also calculates how many panels you might need to save on your electric bill and throws in the solar incentives in your area. Use the slider tool to enter your typical electric bill amount to further customize the results. The website also presents users with buying or leasing options for solar panels and suggests a list of local installers.
And in case you were wondering: "Don't worry," Google says, "Project Sunroof doesn't give the address to anybody else unless you ask it to."
As Project Sunroof's lead engineer Carl Elkin, wrote in a blog post, "The cost of solar power is at a record low. A typical solar home can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars per year on their electricity bill. But, as a volunteer with the Boston-based solar program Solarize Massachusetts and a solar homeowner myself, I’ve always been surprised at how many people I encounter who think that 'my roof isn’t sunny enough for solar,' or 'solar is just too expensive.' Certainly many of them are missing out on a chance to save money and be green."
Project Sunroof is currently available for residents in San Francisco and Fresno, California, and Boston, Massachusetts. There are plans to expand the project from coast to coast, and "maybe even the whole world," as the video below says.
"While Project Sunroof is in a pilot phase for now, during the coming months we’ll be exploring how to make the tool better and more widely available," Elkin also wrote. "If you find that your address isn’t covered by the tool yet, you can leave your email address and we’ll let you know when Project Sunroof is ready for your rooftop!"
Google had recorded a number of green initiatives, and has a long‐term goal to power their operations with 100 percent renewable energy. The company said it has purchased 1.1 gigawatts of renewable energy to power their data centers, and aims to triple their purchases of renewable energy by 2025.
Last month, EcoWatch reported that Google was one of the 13 companies to commit a combined $140 billion to the White House's “American Business Act on Climate Pledge” to slash their environmental footprints and to combat climate change.
“We believe that by directly investing in renewable energy projects, we can help accelerate the shift to zero-carbon power and create a better future for everyone,” Google said in a press release.
Watch Google's video below to learn more about Project Sunroof.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Carey Gillam
For the last five years, Chris Stevick has helped his wife Elaine in her battle against a vicious type of cancer that the couple believes was caused by Elaine's repeated use of Monsanto's Roundup herbicide around a California property the couple owned. Now the roles are reversed as Elaine must help Chris face his own cancer.
The last 50 years have been brutal for wildlife. Animals have lost their habitats and seen their numbers plummet. Now a new report from a British conservation group warns that habitat destruction and increased pesticide use has on a trajectory for an "insect apocalypse," which will have dire consequences for humans and all life on Earth, as The Guardian reported.
By Jake Johnson
A Greenpeace report released Tuesday uses a hypothetical "Smart Supermarket" that has done away with environmentally damaging single-use plastics to outline a possible future in which the world's oceans and communities are free of bags, bottles, packaging and other harmful plastic pollutants.
By Irene Banos Ruiz
Pediatricians in New Delhi, India, say children's lungs are no longer pink, but black.
Our warming planet is already impacting the health of the world's children and will shape the future of an entire generation if we fail to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius (35.6°F), the 2019 Lancet Countdown Report on health and climate change shows.