Here in Cyprus in the Eastern Mediterranean, we’re surrounded by warships from many nations all vying to grab a piece of the newly discovered gas and oil fields. We are also so close to Syria we can often see warships on the horizon moving towards the war zone. Even RAF Akrotiri, one of the British sovereign bases on the island, has had its fair share of bombing runs against IS in Iraq and Syria. You would be forgiven to think we’re ll sitting here waiting for someone to drop a few bombs on us. Well, we’re not, we simply get on with life.
In an ironic twist to all the hoo-hah about the recently discovered oil and gas fields in Cypriot waters, we, at the other end of the island, are preparing to go green and do a little bit to help the environment. Last year my wife and I bought an apartment in Kouklia, near Paphos, which we intended to let out to holidaymakers. We only started in July 2019 and we were soon fully booked up until the end of October. So we decided we needed to enhance our property.
The one thing we have in abundance in Cyprus that is free, is sunshine. So, we decided to put in a solar water heating system. It is being fitted today… or tomorrow. Well, this is Cyprus and the most famous saying on the island is slowly, slowly!
When fitted, we should be able to offer our guests almost 24 hours of heated water, even on a dull day. That means no immersion heater being used and that will save money as well as going a small way to reducing our carbon footprint.
On the assumption this works out well, I’m hoping one day we can add more solar panels for generating electricity to power the apartment. The cooking, heating, lighting, AC and entertainment system are all electric. Now wouldn’t it be something if we could use solar power to have all these working without access to the national grid. And wouldn’t it be great if we could generate enough power so that our guests could hire an all electric car which they could recharge for free. That’s the dream.
Pie in the sky? Maybe not. Tesla’s Powerwall 2 is available which stores energy generated by solar panels. The roof of the image below has one big solar panel on it and the boxy thing on the right wall near the tub with a bush is where the electricity is stored.
I’m a great believer in getting things done by thinking through the problem. So, thinking cap on for a future that doesn’t require fossil fuels to power our lifestyle. Free clean energy anyone?
Copyright © Tom Kane 2020
For more information on our apartment visit the Kouklia Coastal Retreat website.