For Dan Sabia, his passion not only lies with providing solar energy to his customers, but educating them on the topic as well.
Sabia owns Built Well Solar Corp. in Bellmore, and he spends his spare time speaking to elementary students, informing residents at street fairs and speaking to the solar decathlon team at the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT), which happens to be his Alma Matter, according to Newsday.
There are about 5,400 solar power installations on Long Island , and 80 percent of those are residential, according to Michael Deering, vice president of environmental affairs at LIPA. He said 80 percent were installed in the past four years. With the approval on June 28 of LIPA's Clean Solar Initiative, those numbers are expected to grow, he said.
Sabia was also a first responder on Sept. 11, and it was then when he realized he wanted to take a closer look at how local residents used energy.
"First I installed it on my house," he said. "Then I did it for five, six friends. Then I said, 'Well, I guess I am in the business.'"
In 2007, while Sabia was working in the Carle Place School District, he convinced administrators to go solar, and they were the first district on Long Island to do a project of this magnitude. Another company did the work so Sabia avoided any conflict of interest, Newsday added.
"That generation will be immersed in it," Sabia said. "Solar panels will be as commonplace to them as electric lines are to ours."
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