BELLEVUE, Neb. (KMTV) — The country's largest renewable energy event is being held this week. National Solar Tours is an opportunity for people around the country to learn about making the switch to solar energy from their neighbors.
"We have a number of different sessions with actual hosts where they'll be able to ask questions. What it's like going solar, what was the process, what's the price, those sorts of things," Ben Delman, the communications director of National Solar Tours, said.
Most people who use solar energy in their homes or business use solar photovoltaic in which sunlight comes down and energy particles hit and react with the material in solar panels, which then creates an electric current that excites electrons. The electric current is what creates energy.
Don Preister, a Bellevue resident, had his solar panels installed three years ago.
"I decided to do it because, one I like to be independent. Two, I'm concerned about the environment and they allow me to take free solar energy and convert it into the energy that runs my house," Preister said.
Most homeowners who switch to solar power are able to save a third to two thirds of the electricity they use. Preister is able to power his entire home with his backyard panels.
"I'm not only net zero, I'm net positive in my energy usage," Preister said. "In terms of how much electricity I buy, I don't buy any at all."
Through hosting during National Solar Tours, Preister has talked to multiple people who have transitioned to solar power for their home.
"Every year I've gotten one and up to three different people, who after coming here, got their own installed," Preister said.