The Solar Reflector                             Newsletter of the Texas Solar Energy Society -July 2015                


You can help us to fulfill our mission


We need your support to make 2015 an exceptional year for the adoption of solar in Texas. We reach out to communities around the state to educate citizens on the value of clean, affordable, water-wise solar.  


Want to organize a solar tour in your community? 
October is National Solar          Tour Month   

The ASES National Solar Tour is the largest grassroots solar even in the world and this is the 20th year. Texas is a big state and we want to have as many tours as possible. Tell us if you have a few solar enthusiasts in your neighborhood who would like to show off their arrays to interested citizens.

   Our Chapters in      Houston, North Texas,  Austin and San Antonio

The individuals in these local TXSES chapters work to increase the megawatt power of solar energy in their 


TXSES is a Chapter of the American Solar Energy Society
ASES shining a light on the solution since 1954.

One environment, one simple way to care for it.
Your gift through workplace giving supports more than three dozen Texas environmental not-for-profit charities.  

Learn how Reliant Energy generously supports EarthShare Texas and the Texas Solar Energy Society through their  EcoShare Program 

Thank you to the volunteers, homeowners, architects, builders, contractors and especially to Austin Energy Green Building for making the 19th Cool House Tour a huge success!


Chairman's Corner

Scot Arey  


Editors note: this article was written prior to the conclusion of the 84th Legislative Session. The developer loophole that restricted solar installation on developments greater than 50 lots was closed and the Renewable Portfolio Standard was retained.


"It's the economy, stupid."  How many times have we been reminded of that famous advice from a presidential candidate's adviser in 1992 about keeping the campaign on message? Well, I have found reason to invoke that phrase once again! Policies matter with respect to economic growth. I'm going to explain how this is relevant to solar energy.


Putting solar on Texas rooftops is an economic boon just waiting to happen. It will pay dividends to the state today, in the immediate future, and most importantly,for the decades to come as Texas grows more than we ever imagined.


I recently had the privilege of testifying before Texas House and Senate committees regarding the closing of loopholes that allow developers to restrict solar during "development phases." It was a productive day and I was impressed by the thoughtfulness of the questions from legislators.


Still, I knew that my comments needed to hit a theme that was important to all the members of those committees. Well, here it comes: "It's the economy, stupid." More

PACE-Property Assessed Clean Energy 
Makes Its Debut in Travis County

by Ross Pumfrey


PACE is an innovative financing program that enables owners of commercial and industrial properties to pay long-term, low-cost loans for water conservation, energy-efficiency improvements and renewable retrofits through a voluntary assessment on their property. A 2013 Texas law allows municipalities and counties to work with private sector lenders and property owners to finance qualified improvements. 


The first to adopt this program was Travis County and business property owners will now be able to pay back installments on long-term financing through a voluntary assessment on their property. More 

Featured Solar Installations  

 Solar is for everyone, including these hard-working laying hens at Milagro Farm in Red Rock, Texas.

Because they are purveyors of healthy eggs produced by 4,000+ grass-fed chickens and consider themselves stewards of the planet, the owners of Milagro Farm decided to go solar. The discovery that 81 percent of the electricity in Texas comes from coal or natural gas closed the deal.
  • 11.2kW system  

  • Provides 85% of the power for the home and farm

  • 40 microinverters with energy production monitoring

  • Yearly saving in electricity: $1566

  • Installed by Native


Solar energy keeps this emergency veterinary clinic running with backup storage for the occasional grid outage in College Station. 

Local incentives, a concern about electric usage and a desire to reduce their carbon footprint inspired the owners of this emergency veterinary clinic to install 9.5kW of solar in 2012 and 5.5kW more in 2014. Frequent power outages, lasting a few seconds to several hours, had put animals in surgery at risk, so a solar backup power system was installed. Now the staff can't tell if the grid is down unless the lights don't turn on in the break room.

  • 15kW system installed in two phases 
  • 21,000+ kWh of 3-phase battery backup
  • Installed by Texas Green Energy 
           The Solar Reflector is a publication of the 
 Texas Solar Energy Society 
The Texas Solar Energy Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit founded in 1976. The mission is to educate citizens on the value of solar energy for their homes and in their communities, empower them to make informed decisions and encourage them to connect with professional Texas solar businesses. 

Board Officers
        Scot Arey - Chairman  (Killeen)
        Ross Pumfrey- VIce-Chairman  (Austin)
        Bill Glass - Secretary (Austin)
        Jessica Galloway - Treasurer (Austin)
Board Members at Large
        D.J. Rosebaugh (Austin)
        Larry Howe (Plano)
        Richard Behlmann (Katy)
        Nathan Doxsey (Austin)        
 Chapter Representatives to the Board
        Bill Swann - Houston Renewable Energy Group (HREG)
        Matt Weldon - Solar Austin
        Jim Duncan - North Texas Renewable Energy Group (NTREG)                              Garland Scott -Solar San Antonio
 Executive Director - Lucy Stolzenburg 
 Solar Reflector Editor-Lucy Stolzenburg   
 Solar Reflector Copy Editor- Sarah Weber
                           Thanks to Our Sponsors
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 Visit for a list of all our business supporters. We thank all of our members, both business and individual, for supporting our mission to educate Texans on the value of solar and encourage its adoption through local Texas businesses.