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COLUMN: Why a Coldstream couple went solar

John Barling explains the benefits of installing solar and reducing electricity bills

John Barling

Special to The Morning Star

In 2022 my wife, Elaine, and I decided to ‘go solar’ for a number of economic and environmental reasons. Here are some of the reasons why.

Currently the government is offering generous grants and interest-free loans to go solar. By going solar you can drastically reduce or eliminate your electricity bills! Plus, with electricity prices increasing approximately five per cent per year on average and 25-plus year guarantees on each system component there’s no doubt that installing solar energy pays off remarkably well over time. Not only will you get many times your original investment back in the value of electricity generated but it’ll last longer than most other investments too! It is even possible to generate electricity during a power outage.

If a lot of people ’go solar’ it will help with electric vehicle charging and could negate the need for the construction of future hydroelectric projects. There is no pollution produced during the operation of a solar system. It has been estimated that an average sized home solar system has the same positive environmental effect as planting 100 trees per year. Any system helps create jobs that are not fossil fuel related and aids with the reduction of global warming.

We are very happy with our decision to ‘go solar’ as we are getting even more power than predicted and our electricity bills are now miniscule.

John Barling lives in Coldstream and wrote BC Hydro’s ‘Sources—-Solar Energy’ and was Head of Science at the International School in Monte Carlo. If you have any questions re-‘going solar’ John can be reached at

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