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Solar Energy: Passion and Purpose published in The Danville/Alamo/Lafayette Today Newspaper, April 2012

By Mark Becker
| May 9, 2014

Read Original Newspaper Article PDF here

My father tells the story of a young man who was driven by an inner principle. The story intrigues and humors me, because I’m the subject of the story. I don’t remember it quite like it’s told, but it’s set in the early 1980’s when the Soviet Union and their Iron Curtain were at the peak of their power. As a young man I was certain (according to the story) that I could personally do something about the threat that the Soviets presented to our nation. My dad chuckles when he tells the story. His understanding of me was validated when I joined the Marine Corps. My personal mission was to defeat the Soviet threat to our nation. Perhaps the fact that the Marine Corps offered meaningful employment and a paycheck minimized parental opposition to my pursuit. As parents do, they try to protect their children. In response to their at-tempts to have me “put more thought into it,” I reminded dad about the advice he always gave us: “You’ll spend most of your life working, so find a career that’s enjoyable and purposeful.” The rest is history. There was purpose in this pursuit.With bachelors degree in hand, I became one of “The Few, the Proud.”

During the First Gulf War, I saw, smelled, and hacked up the resins of the burning oil fields in Kuwait. After some reflection, I knew there had to be a betterway than energy from oil.

After my active service I realized I could continue to contribute to the security of our nation via my passion for Solar Energy. I was still following dad’s advice.

At GoSimpleSolar, we’re passionate about Solar Energy because it creates jobs which support the US economy and manufacturing base. The solar business reduces America’s reliance on foreign sources of oil, increases our domestic se-curity, and improves our environment. The solar business is a rewarding business because the product provides financial return to the customer. The product often sells itself because of its financial returns.

We feel strongly that those of us in alternative energy and citizens involved in resource conservation are making an important contribution to our nation. If you’ve installed solar, you’re also making contributions to your savings or retirement. A properly designed solar array with quality products installed for a reasonable price will generate significant financial returns.

Five years ago , my home’s annual electric costs were over $1500. Thanks tosolar, my annual PGE bill is now less than $250. Due to the average 6.7% annual cost increase of electricity, currently, my bill would have been over $2000 had I not installed a solar array Very simply said, my solar array is paying for itself, and it will continue to pay me well into my retirement. It’s like having an ATM on my roof.

Solar Milestone Achieved: In 2011, the State Of California surpassed 100,000 in-stalled solar arrays for homes and businesses. Over 100,000 solar customers are reaping the financial rewards of solar. What do they know that you don’t know? As we enter the “high solar season,” I’ll keep you informed with Danville Today articles. I’ll help you understand the financial benefits you’ll enjoy should you decide to go solar.

Electric Vehicle Update: If an electric vehicle suits your lifestyle, they’re getting more and more affordable due to the current and rising price of gas. PGEs electric vehicle charging rate is significantly lower than their standard rates. The Department of Energy will install a free fast charger to all purchasers of a Nissan Leaf in the Bay Area, a $2000+ cost when purchased at the dealership. When “refu-eled” by a solar array, electric vehicles become even more cost competitive.

The story I’ve related above about my childhood convictions is by no means a unique story. It is an all too familiar story across America as our nation’s youngmen and women respond to their own inner callings to protect our great nation. As mentioned above, contributing to the security of our nation can be achieved in many ways. I believe that solar can help solve our nation’s energy problems.
It’s rewarding helping other people to become a part of the solution. If you have a home or business that you think may benefit from a solar electric energy system,please contact us at For more information, visit us at

By Mark Becker, GoSimpleSolar

Mark Becker is the President of GoSimpleSolar/Semper Fidelis Construc-tion, Inc, a residential and small commercial solar power installation firm based in Danville. He can be reached at 925.915.9252.