Published on August 5th, 2014 | by Beth Bond


Maximizing Rooftop Solar

August 5th, 2014 by  

In the latest TalkSolar episode, I interview Ralph Velasquez of NewWind, out of Nashville, Tennessee, about NewWind’s new way of maximizing solar on your roof.

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3c319f6Ralph has been involved in the roofing and building industry since 1978, and renewable technologies since 1999. In his career, he has re-roofed millions of square feet in the industrial, commercial, institutional and governmental sectors all over North America. His passion for sustainability was formed from his early ideals of stewardship, minimalism, and legacy, sharpened by five years in the late 80’s and early 90’s, working in Sub-Sahara Africa.

NewWind Energy SolutionsRalph is one of the industry’s early innovators in the green roof industry. He developed the GreenSave calculator, the green roof industry’s first financial benefit calculator, and was part of the ASTM sub-committee that wrote the first five national ASTM standards for green roofs. He completed the first ever green roof installation on a Presidential Library, with the completion of the William Jefferson Clinton Library in Little Rock, Arkansas, in 2008; and an award winning design on the National Institutes of Health, in Bethsesda, MD. Involved in distributed solar since 2008, Ralph developed over 3.5 MW of rooftop solar during the throngs of the great recession, from 2008-2010.

From 2010-2012, Ralph was the Executive Director for Sustainability for a global roofing manufacturer, responsible for all policy and strategic sustainability initiatives, world-wide. In late 2012, Ralph, along with his wife, formed Ark Investments to focus on micro investment opportunities in sustainability in rural and local communities. To date, investments have been made in sustainable animal husbandry, music, and land development. Earlier this spring, Ralph joined NWES, as the Sr. Director of Business Development to again pursue the idea of rooftop solar, this time with a ROI financial focus.

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About the Author

is the Curator of Green and Sustainable Business News at Southeast Green, and the driving force behind Southeast Green. Bond spent her formative years in Mobile, Alabama. She graduated from Florida State University and then served in Bouza, Niger as a Peace Corps Volunteer. When not working to better her community, she participates in her church where she serves as Co-Chair for the Creation Care committee. She is an avid tennis and college football fan.

  • GCO

    tldl: using needlessly fancy modules (glass-on-glass bifacial) so as to make the roof artificially part of the PV system, enough to claim tax credits on re-roofing as well.

    In the end, the system costs more than regular roofing + PV, but a larger fraction can be deducted.

    As a taxpayer myself, sorry, I feel cheated.

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