Last week I attended Lee County Days in Tallahassee as part of the Sanibel – Captiva Chamber of Commerce delegation.These are days set aside so that community leaders and interested citizens from Lee County can meet with elected officials and heads of different state government departments.
A couple of things I learned were:1.Lee County leads the state in Waste to Energy.Almost all of our trash is converted, cleanly, to electricity.Covanta Energy – a nationwide company – has a plant in Lee County and generates enough electricity to power 29,000 homes. Pretty neat!
2.Lee County has a major initiative to create an Innovation Hub – not far from the airport.The intention here is to attract green businesses into a campus setting – think Research Triangle in North Carolina.This initiative is in conjunction with FGCU and the R&D will focus on renewable energy research.Again – pretty neat.
Sanibel Island is known for sun, shells, lots of conservation property, bobcats and alligators. A group of interested citizens are now working to make it known for something else - being leaders in the uses of renewable resources.
I am chairing Sanibel Alliance for Renewable Resources (S.A.R.R.) and hoping that as many Sanibel residents and interested parties will join us as possible. This make sense not only for the environment but also for the value of our property and the island. It is totally in keeping with what makes the island special.
The first initiative of the group is to educate and encourage the use of Solar Hot Water heating systems. We feel that with all the sun energy available for free - this makes sense for the island. Providers of these systems, including Advance Solar - are working with us to make this as affordable as possible, likely under $2,000 per system! There are State grants and Federal Tax Credits available at this time to help the equation. If you would like more information about the Alliance or would like to join us, please visit www.sanibelenergy.com. To see our press release see Page 5 of the Island Sun