Meet Mark Curtis, Simply A Regular Local weather Warrior & Defender Of Democracy

Meet Mark Curtis. Mark is a standard man, residing the American dream. He married his faculty sweetheart, Becky, who he met at a keg celebration as a freshman at Michigan State. He and Becky began an organization in customized software program and consulting, and ran the corporate for 30 years earlier than retiring not too long ago.

Mark is a local weather warrior. He began driving an EV 12 years in the past, a Nissan Leaf with 75 miles of vary, and has pushed electrical completely since then. He now drives a 2016 Tesla Mannequin S, which has 110,000 miles on it. Based on Mark, “I’m lucky to have free supercharging for the lifetime of that automobile and make the most of that for Tesla Highway journeys. In April we loved a 3,000 mile highway journey to hike within the Nationwide Parks in Utah (free electrons!).”

The workplace constructing, with free EV charging for workers, which resulted in numerous workers shopping for EVs!

Mark and Becky owned a 7,000 sq. foot workplace constructing for 16 years, promoting it not too long ago. They used the workplace to advertise clear power and electrical autos. The workplace constructing is 100% electrical. In early 2012, Mark and Becky added an 8.4 kW photo voltaic array to the roof which significantly diminished their month-to-month electrical energy payments, resulting in an 8 yr payback interval. Based on Mark, “It has been ‘free photo voltaic electrical energy’ since 2020.”

Mark mentioned, “Over a lunch with my staff in late 2011, I went to the white board and diagrammed the price benefits of proudly owning an electrical automobile. I supplied so as to add automobile chargers to our constructing and supply free electrical energy to the staff. Over the subsequent few years, a dozen of the staff members purchased or leased electrical automobiles! We added 4 Clipper Creek stage 2 chargers, that are nonetheless in use. For among the workers their EV was primarily ‘free’ when in comparison with their earlier ICE automobile prices which had been prevented (gasoline being the most important of the prices prevented).”

Mark then showcased this success to buddies, who he says just about all drive EVs now.

Defender of democracy

The Washington Publish has a tagline that “Democracy Dies in Darkness.” That is an homage to the significance of an unbiased media ecosystem that may expose corruption and maintain society working by and for the folks. If you consider it, there are few different industries or establishments which have this functionality, and plenty of of them are governmental, and subsequently topic to inside corruption and defunding at a dictator’s whim.

Lately, I wrote a bit in regards to the media business, which is in hassle. Noteworthy is the shuttering of stories divisions together with Buzzfeed, MTV Information, VICE, and extra, in addition to the layoffs throughout many media corporations, together with the LA Instances, which laid off 15% of its employees a month after profitable a few Pulitzers.

The pool of promoting cash is drying up, because it has began to circulation towards influencers on social media. Faux information and AI to generate it’s ubiquitous now. And basically, there are a lot, rather more worthwhile companies than media shops, so often, the brightest minds in entrepreneurship steer clear … I’d prefer to assume Zach and I are brilliant minds, however perhaps we’re not so brilliant in spite of everything…? I’m in fact kidding — Zach is a whiz, as you already know. However the problem of doing good journalism and monetizing it’s not to be underestimated.

Our aim right here at CleanTechnica is to speed up the cleantech revolution. However the aim of different media shops is precisely the alternative. I inform the story usually of how Tucker Carlson obtained a $3 million test from a coal baron to fund his media startup, which, not surprisingly, did nothing however forged doubt on local weather science and scare folks about local weather options like photo voltaic, EVs, and extra.

Mark wrote in after studying my article, suggesting a number of issues we may do, and providing to pitch in a couple of dollars a month if we may transfer away from the clunky system we had been utilizing with PayPal and get to one thing that was simple to make use of a bank card with. We discovered one, thanks to a different reader who wrote in, named Ryder. It’s appropriately known as “Fund Journalism,” and one way or the other, it had by no means crossed my desk previous to Ryder’s suggestion. It’s a lot simpler than what we had beforehand for our month-to-month contributors, which was clunky and unreliable.

So now, because of Ryder, we’re off and working with a brand new contribution web page, the place readers (like Mark) who wish to assist us speed up the cleantech revolution can achieve this with only a bank card and arrange a month-to-month contribution of any quantity they select, and cancel with a click on or two at any time. Mark pitched in $10 a month to our publication, and we respect it a ton!

Try our month-to-month contributor web page, and in case you can, chip in a couple of dollars.

Reader feedback are tremendous useful to us! Extra on the backside about that.

So, what’s up for Mark, the conventional local weather champ and defender of democracy, now that he’s retired?

It’s time to spend time in his off-grid log house. The couple constructed the house in 1994, however had to determine easy methods to energy the 5 bed room house and outbuildings, on the time, utilizing a ten kW propane-fired generator, a 4,000 watt inverter, and a pair of,200 kilos of lead-acid batteries.

Later, as cleantech superior, they greened it up. “In 2017 we added a 7.4 kW photo voltaic array situated in a sunny spot 650 ft from the house,” mentioned Mark. “The 24 panel array is mounted on 2 poles to maintain them away from the deep winter snows. The snow slides off the panels when the temperature is 32 levels or larger, so we by no means need to clear the panels ourselves. The solar energy diminished our generator use from 1,200 hours a yr to 200 hours a yr. The photo voltaic addition has an 8 yr payback.”

Thanks, Mark! You’re the change we wish to see on the earth. Thanks for being a pacesetter, and a reader of CleanTechnica.

And, take a cue from Mark — in case you see one thing that may assist CleanTechnica thrive and proceed to develop in a tricky media business, hit us up!

Photographs courtesy of Mark Curtis


I do not like paywalls. You do not like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Right here at CleanTechnica, we applied a restricted paywall for some time, however it at all times felt incorrect — and it was at all times powerful to determine what we must always put behind there. In concept, your most unique and greatest content material goes behind a paywall. However then fewer folks learn it! We simply do not like paywalls, and so we have determined to ditch ours.

Sadly, the media enterprise remains to be a tricky, cut-throat enterprise with tiny margins. It is a endless Olympic problem to remain above water and even maybe — gasp — develop. So …