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Solar Energy and Off-Grid Power Storage with Spencer Christensen
Episode 463rd August 2022 • Construction Disruption • Isaiah Industries
00:00:00 00:35:46

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Solar energy has been a hot topic for many years, but recently it’s taken a big leap forward. With affordable home energy storage, solar is closer to being a viable energy source. More than ever, finding an alternative to fossil fuels and something more sustainable is crucial. As temperatures rise and natural disasters mount, we cannot ignore the need for renewable energy.

 

Solar power has come a long way since its inception. Now you can install a battery in your home and store enough power for your whole home. But how can you know if your home is right for solar or energy storage?

An industry trailblazer, Spencer Christensen, joins us on today’s podcast to give us the inside scoop on everything solar! From Salt Lake City, Utah, Spencer is the co-founder of Home Grid Energy and the director of Lithion Battery Inc. He is highly experienced and knowledgeable about solar energy and wants to share the future of energy with our listeners. The way we build homes is evolving, and the trades job market is following suit as solar becomes more popular.

 

Tune in for an exciting and information-packed conversation!


Topics discussed in this episode:

  • What attracted Spencer to the solar energy industry?
  • The future of home power generation
  • What are home grid batteries?
  • The benefits of storing energy with batteries
  • LIP vs. NMC batteries
  • Info on the ABC Supply Sustainability Experience Center in National City, California
  • How roofers are key to solar panel installation 
  • Spencer’s thoughts on integrated solar 
  • What is the typical battery size and the best place to put it in the home?
  • Exciting things happening in solar
  • Which parts of the country are adopting solar energy?
  • Advice for people wanting to enter the solar energy industry


Head to the HomeGrid Energy website here to request a demo! To connect with Spencer, call him at 385-321-1850.

 

To hear more Construction Disruption episodes, visit us on Apple Podcasts or YouTube.


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This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis:

Podtrac - https://analytics.podtrac.com/privacy-policy-gdrp
Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy

Transcripts

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

So a lot of homeowners, when they're buying solar, they usually will ask about batteries. But when they find out that it can only power, you know, fridge and lights, they don't really want to invest $15,000 into that. But if it was a seamless, full-home backup and everything worked in your house, you never had to think about it. That's something that a lot of homeowners really have an appeal towards.

TODD MILLER:

:

Welcome to the Construction Disruption podcast, where we uncover the future of building and remodeling. I'm Todd Miller of Isaiah Industries, manufacturer of specialty metal roofing and other building materials. And today my co-host is Ethan Young, also of Isaiah Industries. Now, Ethan is always behind the scenes here, but today we pulled him out from behind the camera and the keyboard to be live and real. Welcome, Ethan. How are you doing today?

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

I'm doing pretty good, Todd. How about you?

TODD MILLER:

:

You know I'm doing real well. Today's been a great day, and I figure even if I have a bad day, at least I don't have to worry about going home at the end of a bad day and finding out that my wife has pooped on the bed. So I figure that that's always a positive thing. But, you know, if it does happen, you might come out of it $13 million richer. So, I mean, it could work. So that kind of gives everyone who's listening a cue as to when exactly we recorded this episode, but looking forward to our time today. So our goal here at Construction Disruption is to provide timely and forward-looking information regarding the construction world. As part of that, we always look at new innovations as well as trends in practices, building materials, the labor market, leadership and other things. Basically, our goal here is to go out and learn of new and emerging disruptive things that are going to shape the future of building and remodeling. And then we go out and find an expert in that area to be spotlighted as a guest on the show. In today's episode of Construction Disruption, we're going to finally talk about something that I've wanted to talk about ever since the beginning of our show, and that is solar power. Certainly, solar power has been a major disruptor in construction and is going to continue to be for the foreseeable future. So to guide our conversation today and share his expertise today, we have Spencer Christensen from Salt Lake City, Utah. Spencer is the co-founder of HomeGrid Energy and he's also director of Lithion Battery Inc. Spencer, welcome to Construction Disruption. It's really a pleasure to have you as our guest today.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Thanks for having me on. I love being part of this.

TODD MILLER:

:

I think it's interesting, you entered into the world of solar at a pretty young age and you're quickly making a career for yourself as well as a place as an industry leader. Your education is engineering and manufacturing, so you could have gone into a zillion different directions. Why solar? Why now? What attracted you to this industry?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I wanted to do environmental engineering, but they didn't have the degree, so I wanted to get into this space. My background in as far as work was in sales, I live in Salt Lake. It's kind of Mecca for salesmen. And I met my friend's uncle is the engineer that designed the battery cells on the Bezos rocket and the Railgun. He's one of the pioneers of lithium iron phosphate. And we met about two years ago and we sat down, had dinner, and he told me about this vision where he said, in the future, one of the commodities, like what's going to enter the commodity space is batteries for homes. I was like, it blew my mind. I was like, No way, it was crazy. Like, I had no idea that was going to happen. And I knew solar was emerging and I knew it was going to be going to be the way we got out of fossil fuels. I had done a ton of research and I didn't think that nuclear or some other approaches were quite as viable as solar. But I didn't realize that the missing piece was going to be batteries. And as soon as that clicked that night we just launched. The next day, I bought the domain for the company. I got the investment ready to go and just started calling. I probably called a hundred solar companies the next day trying to figure out the market, understanding what was going on, who the competitors were, what the market, where it was going. And then I moved out to California and just started knocking on doors and figuring out what to do next. And now we are a totally different company a couple of years later.

TODD MILLER:

:

Very interesting. So you've gone through some metamorphosis, some change during that time. Well, tell us a little bit about HomeGrid Energy and Lithion battery and tell us the connection between the companies, what both companies do. Give us a picture of that.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

We were actually acquired. HomeGrid was part of Stored Energy Inc. and we had two sides there. We had the HomeGrid division and the GridBox division. And GridBox is, you know, shipping containers, 480 volt. We do it working with a lot of the utility companies to get cities off the grid, large commercial manufacturing sites. And then we have the HomeGrid, which is small, commercial and residential, and we were acquired by Lithion last September. So Lithion is a global battery manufacturer. They do batteries, they have anywhere from Boston Dynamics robots to Disney rides. And now we're a growing part of their business portfolio. So we needed I mean, these batteries are aren't cheap, especially on the larger end. So we needed a really good partner on the manufacturing end to have the inventory to really achieve the goals that we wanted to.

TODD MILLER:

:

Sure, that makes a lot of sense. Well, tell us a little bit about HomeGrid energy and the home use batteries, how someone might be able to use those and what it is that is drawing people to you.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

So, to give a quick overview on the battery market and why it will enter the commodity space. So every day your solar produces from 8 a.m. to about 4 to 5 p.m.. And most of the production is going to be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.. But people aren't really consuming that much in those hours. You know, more people are working from home, working remote. But most of the consumption is in the afternoon and evening. When people come back from work, turn on their AC, all the kids are home from school. And so they have this thing where in a lot of cities you pay more for your power in the afternoon. They call them peak grids. So it can be anywhere from, you know, twice as much or even significantly more, five times more expensive. Like in Hawaii it's extremely expensive during those peak hours. So the way you can offset that is you charge your battery off of your solar in the morning and then it only takes an hour, hour and a half to charge it. And then in the evening, instead of drawing from the grid, you draw from your battery. What they're seeing is, you used to be able to sell your power back to the grid and buy it back for the same rate. But now you sell it for X amount and they'll sell it back to you in the evening for much more. So they'll sell you back your own power for way more. And cities actually do want batteries. Our biggest clients are the utility companies because the grid failures are usually just because there's too much consumption. And you can't just crank up the consumption on the whatever fossil fuel coal plant, right. It is pretty steady what you can get out of it. So with batteries now, this is a viable way for homeowners to deal with their own consumption, not tax the grid. There'll be a lot less grid failures as people shift over to their own solar and batteries is a distributed energy market, which is significantly better. It's safer and more reliable. So the big freeze, the snowpocalypse down in Texas, a lot of people realized for the first time that when the power shut off, even though they had really big solar arrays without a battery, solar, it doesn't work. Because they can't have your solar be sending power back into the grid with the grid down because it could shock the utility workers. So they make it mandatory that it shuts off. So there's the emergency backup. You know, a lot of people love that piece of mind. In northern California, they have blackouts during fire season all the time. And people around the country are realizing the grid isn't quite as stable as they thought. So there's the two parts of it. It's economical, like it pays for itself in a lot of areas. Hawaii pays for itself in, you know, three years. And then these batteries will last 15 years. That puts money back in your pocket. Now, that's kind of an overview on batteries in general and why it's growing. The question as far as why they use the HomeGrid battery over other batteries. So quick info, Tesla, opened the market quite a bit. You know, there's others, some great ones like Enphase and SolarEdge which are the inverters and and Enphase and SolarEdge now have their own batteries. You've got about ten other main players in the space. The reason that we're significantly better than those players is our output is anywhere from 3 to 5 times more. So a lot of homeowners, when they when they're buying solar, they usually will ask about batteries. But when they find out that it can only power, you know, fridge and lights, they don't really want to invest $15,000 into that. But if it was a seamless, full-home backup where you didn't have to do any maintenance like on a generator and everything worked in your house, so you never had to think about it. That's something that a lot of homeowners really have an appeal towards. That's what we came into the market with the mindset of how do we have full-home backup? We want a modular approach and we want to decrease the labor amount time. So the way we did that is it's got 15 kilowatt continuous, which, if you look at like an Enphase battery, which is a really great one, but it's kind of older tech. They only have about 4 kilowatt continuous, so we've got 15 kilowatt continuous. And what that is like with a car, you've got the gas tank, how much you can use and how long it can go. And then you've got the engine, which is like how much power you're getting. So our battery, the reason that this is the best battery on the market is not only is it modular and you can customize it for the home like Lego pieces, but you can also power everything.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

That's really cool. I noticed something when I was kind of researching your guy's website before was the that modularity. I'm a little bit of a layperson, I didn't know much about, I've seen the Tesla Powerwall and stuff before, but seeing all those different sizes and like all the different, you know, it's so flexible compared to something like that. That really draws a lot of people in. I also this is a weird kind of timing thing, but I saw a YouTube video from a Texas homeowner like a couple of days ago. I didn't know I was going to be on this specific podcast, hosting for it, but and he was talking about the exact same thing with, okay, well, how can I get a backup? And he thought about generators and he's like, okay, well, I'm only going to use it every couple of years maybe, and I want to do the maintenance. And he thought about a home battery, but he couldn't find one that was like not just really expensive and too much for him. So it was the exact same situation, ended up getting a smaller battery kind of thing that he could keep and just had solar panels up on his roof. But he had like most of the same points you did where you can save energy during the peak times and you know it can help power the whole house. His is not, his is only like I think it could do AC and like the lights for a couple of days. But it was interesting timing that I happened to watch a video before this.

TODD MILLER:

:

This may be a completely off the wall question, so I may be entirely wrong. I mean, would it be feasible for someone to put the battery in without having solar, simply to use it to store up energy during off-peak times or to protect themselves during rolling blackouts or something?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Yeah, we see that all the time. The only time, though, that you really wouldn't want to add solar is if your roof was a shape that wasn't facing the right direction or if you had a lot of different facets and it didn't make sense, or if you were had really big trees, crazy shading around the house. Because, across the country, solar is cheaper than fossil fuels everywhere. So it's always makes sense. Even if you have a small solar array, whatever you're offsetting, it still would be cheaper than drawing from the grid.

TODD MILLER:

:

Sure.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

So you can definitely get batteries without solar, but solar almost always pencils out. But it's a great point. We see it all the time, preppers love it.

TODD MILLER:

:

So you folks use the term lithium ion phosphate batteries. Is that the same technology as the other batteries or is that different than the other batteries?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

That's a great question. So LFP's been around for about... My partner, Stu Graham, he was one of the pioneers at Valence of lithium iron phosphate. And the reason everybody's shifting over to LFP versus NMC, which is what you have in your phones. It's what Tesla and the cars use, GENERAC and LG use on their batteries, home batteries. It's a little bit lighter, it's like 30% lighter. Which batteries in a car, right, density is is really important in a vehicle.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Sure.

TODD MILLER:

:

But the reason Rivian and now Tesla, even Tesla motors is shifting over to lithium iron phosphate is, it's a lot safer. There's no thermal runaway. So if you heard about any of those microgrids like in Australia. The Tesla fires took like three days to put out the NMC batteries, nickel, cobalt and manganese. They spit out an oxygen so they can burn under water and you have to pour like cement on them or go to pretty extreme measures to to put them out. It took several hundred firemen to put it on the microgrid scale. So everybody's shifting over to lithium iron phosphate because there's no thermal runaway, so they're much safer. They'll also last quite a bit longer. Anywhere from it can be even up to twice as long, 50% or even twice as long as the NMC batteries. There's no memory on them either. You can cycle them all the way down without damaging it, which is a big deal.

TODD MILLER:

:

Very good. Well, you had mentioned earlier that you are recording today from the ABC Supply Sustainability Experience Center in National City, California, and you have a relationship with them. Tell us a little bit about the experience center there, what they have and what someone could okay, lack of a better word, experience by going there?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

So ABC, quick overview on them. They're the largest roofing distributor in the US. They have over 900 store locations, storefronts and they've really dominated in the roofing sector. Here in National City, San Diego is one of the epicenters of solar across the world and you know, some of their staff had had some experience with solar. So essentially what was going on here is they started selling solar and working with solar companies. Then ERC just like started adding in his portfolio of different solar accounts and did that for a couple of years. I'd be right up with them at the beginning of COVID and we started figuring out a plan to onboard ABC nationwide. So now we're in kind of phase two, where for the next month we have trainings across the country. We've got the Northeast coming online. We already did a training with the Southeast. Now we have the Midwest, Norcal, Hawaii. We've got about 8 to 10 locations ready to stock and you know, there's 100,000 roofing companies across the US. I genuinely felt that roofing and solar are going to be one market. It makes sense. They're already on the roof. When you're doing a sale, it's not a cold call. You already have the confidence of the homeowner. It's an upsell, but it's the best upsell ever because for the homeowner, it's a steal, it's not like they're paying more. They're actually paying less. It's a bill swap. Instead of paying more to your utility company, they're paying less, so they're saving more money. There's all these issues with solar companies puncturing the roof and voiding the warranties, causing all these leaks. Roofers can solve that problem. I think the price for solar will go down, it'll be a more efficient system. And I think it's going to disrupt the solar market by bringing in a massive influx of roofers into the market. ABC also delivers panels to the roof, which is good. Like I don't know if you've seen, but the solar guys right now have to carry all the solar panels to the roof, which is just insane. It's super, it's a huge hassle. So having it delivered to the roof is going to ease the burden quite a bit. Roofers are really efficient and they can do the roof, the rack, and the panel and then sub out to an electrician to do all the hot work or vertically integrate and get their license and do it themselves.

TODD MILLER:

:

You know, it's interesting you bring that up. Years ago, even back in the eighties, we had made the comment that if you're in the roofing business, you're in the energy business. And back then, a lot of our focus was on how can we help save energy through a smart or cool roofing system.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Right.

TODD MILLER:

:

But of course, we knew that eventually it was going to be production of energy that would be occurring up there as well. So we're right spot on with you on that point. I'm kind of curious. You kind of opened the door there. So what are your thoughts as you know, someone very experienced and knowledgeable in solar? What are your thoughts on integrated solar? And I'm sure ABC Supply is probably showing some variation of solar shingles, Certainteed or somebody there. What are your thoughts on that versus traditional PV panels long term?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I went to the roofing convention in New Orleans. I was one of the only renewable guys there. I saw Iron Ridge, one of the racking companies, but there really weren't any solar people there. I think next year it's going to be crawling with solar guys and I went and checked out the Certainteed portfolio because I wanted to, I wanted to see like, how do we do this? And they had their Apollo II's. So I was interested. I'm doing the Apollo II's on my dad's house. I had done a battery, I used his house. It's like a really nice house with a great backdrop as kind of like a test house so that I can invite people over and they can check it out.

SPEAKER:

:

Mm hmm.

SPEAKER:

:

And we're doing the Apollo II's there. The one issue that I see right now, the price point's not as aggressive. It's actually cheaper to do regular roof rack and panel. There are some kinks they're working out as far as the engineering. I do think it'll have its place. But for the next five years it seems that rack and panel will be the predominant choice by far.

TODD MILLER:

:

Yeah, that's kind of where we're at. I mean, we think the future's there, but we've kind of so far been recommending traditional panels, usually to folks. So back to your batteries. Something I want to ask earlier and Ethan kind of alluded to it. What is the typical size of a battery? If someone were putting it in their home and where would be the ideal place to locate it? It may seem like a silly question, but I suspect most folks would wonder that.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

So the average consumer, the average homeowner consumes about 35 kilowatt hours a day. Solar will be offsetting about half of that. But again, most of the consumption is in the evening. So we size it and we've got some different sizing tools. It's usually about half the consumption you're going to want a battery for. So probably our four-stack battery is the 19.2 kilowatt hour battery is the the average size we see. Now, they're outdoor rated. We do see them on the side of houses. The best place is in the garage, away from the elements, and they'll last longer and it's more climate controlled. So you'll get better results out of your battery for longer.

TODD MILLER:

:

Very good. So, I mean, you're obviously really excited about the future of solar. And, you know, this is where you have staked your career. Is there anything you're seeing today as far as exciting work and development regarding the future of solar and things we might see coming down the pike?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I'm the most excited about this ABC development. It's kind of my baby, it's like what I put. I'm down here to help build out the training program for the different roofing companies as they get into solar. There have been seven major attempts to bring roofers into solar, and I think the reason it hasn't happened until now, timing's a big part of it. But also, I don't think the training was there. So we're trying to offset that and really have the training. So now they have their main distributor online, which is huge. They're going to have an ABC that's stocking solar. That's going to be a big part of it. They have different brands that they're used to like Certainteed in the game. So there's brand familiarity. And now there's going to be this Jones effect that pops up where, you know, roofers are coming into solar across the country and they will realize that it's easier than they thought. Right. So we just have to have the training program as that effect kicks in and they're looking around and seeing it happen. So that it's very simple for them to to jump into it. That's probably what excites me the most right now. I think it's going to be a big part of it. I also love seeing the utility companies come online. I don't genuinely like the way that utility companies have operated up to this point. There's been virtually no disruption. And, you know, they kind of just been milking off of an old system and kind of lobbying. But now they're our biggest customers and they're realizing that it's kind of like when AT&T cannibalized their own market, they realized that everything was moving away from landlines and they came out with a force of disruption in the landline space. They're doing the same. The utility companies are putting batteries on people's homes and massive batteries for communities and huge solar arrays. So it's really fun to see solar enter the commodity space.

TODD MILLER:

:

What are some of the areas of the country where you are seeing utility companies being the most progressive in regards to solar? I know, interestingly, our local power company here in Ohio has several large solar fields. But I'm just say I think that's a little bit unusual here in Ohio. So what are some of the areas that you're seeing particular progress being made?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I just saw some stuff over in Nevada, really big projects that are exciting. California, of course, PG&E, they burn down cities every year. So they have massive incentives to to start shifting over. Their grid's pretty rough. Hawaii, Texas, the Northeast is really great. They have one of the best utility programs. So it's kind of popping up everywhere. Everywhere but, Florida is starting to really get after it.

TODD MILLER:

:

Mm, very good. It certainly seems like something that no one is going to be able to ignore if they're in construction. I mean it truly has been a disrupter and will be going forward. You know, one of the things that's interesting to me, we get to see a lot of designs of buildings. And some of these are homes, some of them are what I call monumental buildings or churches or government buildings. But I see a lot of things come to us from architects. Very rarely do I, matter of fact, I'm not sure I hardly ever remember seeing a set of plans where solar is an intentional and original part of the design. Do you think that's lack of knowledge or awareness on the part of the design community, and do you feel that that will be something that will have to change in the future?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

That will change across the board. In California now you have to have solar.

TODD MILLER:

:

Sure.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

What I've seen is everywhere else copies California. Whatever starts in California goes everywhere. So, I mean, they already have in California, a commercial build 2023 on has to have batteries as well. So yeah, it'll be very, very common to see across the country that it's mandatory to have solar, mandatory to have batteries on residential and commercial projects.

TODD MILLER:

:

Do you see anyone reaching out to the design community? And and I ask this because I know we got a number of architects and designers in our audience. Do you see anyone intentionally reaching out to the design community with solar education, or do you think it right now it's more, okay, you're going to have to do what's according to code, go find yourself a solar guy and get it done.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I don't know if I'm the right person to talk to about that. That's a really great question, as far as what the education program looks like for the these designers, you know, where I don't know if that's a fail point. It's pretty straightforward to design these systems. I think the biggest point here could be that if it is part of the original design, the price point could go down because it's not an additional price added on later. And that's the whole goal is how do we how do we decrease the price across the board? Because if once solar and batteries is cheaper, then the grid. At that point, you know, it's like right now solar is cheaper than the grid everywhere. But wind, solar, and battery are cheaper than the grid everywhere. It's a totally different ballgame.

TODD MILLER:

:

Sure. Well, in a few weeks here, the AIA, annual AIA show will be held in Chicago. It'll be interesting, I'll be up there and I'll be looking out and seeing if there's much mention or talk of solar at the show. Be really interesting to find that out because it seems to me like that may be something that just isn't isn't a lot of awareness out there yet among the design community. So, be interesting.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Yeah, I think you're right. It's a good point.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

I did want to ask I kind of thought about this. In that same video that I watched, that homeowner had a couple of EVs. So I was curious on how you thought those played into the battery system. He was discussing kind of using them as a temporary power source for a battery or... I also just read an article about the new Ford Lightning, the electric pickup truck that you can kind of use that as a pseudo-battery in case of an emergency. So what are your thoughts on that?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I think it'll have its place in the future. As of right now with the Ford Lightning, unfortunately, you can't power that much. You definitely can't have like your AC or multiple appliances going. The output is so small. But I do like the concept of it, I like the direction they're going. You know, if the power goes out and people don't really want to drain their car to zero, because then your car can't go. I think there's going to be a place for both. I mean, I can't wait on my house. I'm going to have. I can't wait for a bi-directional electric vehicle, but I definitely still want my own battery for daily use, offsetting my power bill and never drawing from the bill or from the grid and a solar array to to charge all of it.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

Yeah, I think it could be a really interesting kind of unified system in the future where your car is off electric, you're getting the power from solar, and it's kind of just all working together. I think it could be really special.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Yeah, well, so a lot of people are gone during the day and yeah, the goal would be to charge your car off of your home battery, which I think is... And the price points are going down, in five years from now it's going to be even cheaper. And so I think both are going to be part of it.

TODD MILLER:

:

So I'm going to ask you a question that's very personal to us, and it may not make the final cut. We'll see, but I have to ask it. So there's a chemical that's used in the high performance coatings of metal roofing systems that is currently being impacted because of what we're told is the EV batteries are using this chemical also. It's something called PVDF. And I'm curious if that's anything that's familiar to you or used at all in your batteries. It's polyvinylidene fluoride.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

I tried to google this really quick and I think I saw that it was, but I'm not sure.

TODD MILLER:

:

Okay.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

PVDF, let's see. I don't know anything about it. I'm not a chemist. I've got a really great chemical engineer partner.

TODD MILLER:

:

It's all the talk in our industry right now because, you know, it's very difficult for us at this point to get enough of the coatings that we use on a regular basis. And it's a lot of it's being blamed on the electric vehicle battery industry.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Okay. Yeah, I'll check it out. I don't, I don't know enough about it. I've never heard of that.

TODD MILLER:

:

Another odd connection we have to this industry right now is a company is building in a town near us of about 20,000, building a plant that's supposed to employ about 1300 making liners for EV batteries. So it's kind of interesting. We're going to see some major impact here in our own community as well.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

That's crazy. Yeah, that's going to be a big economic shift. What Warren Buffett said, deregulation of energy is the largest transfer of wealth in history.

TODD MILLER:

:

Hmm.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Somebody called me out and said he that everybody says everything is going to be the largest transfer of wealth in history. So they called me out on it. But I don't know. I think it's supposed to be Wood Mackenzie said it's going to be like a $15 trillion market, so I think we're all going to feel it. It's going to hit every community.

TODD MILLER:

:

Oh, absolutely, I believe. Yeah. So, Spencer, a lot of our audience members are folks who are fairly early in their careers in construction and design. Any advice you'd have for folks entering this industry for their career, you know, especially pertaining to the world of solar or clean and renewable energy? Anything they should be watching for, anyone they should be paying attention to and listening? Any real super interesting places for them to look to further their career?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Just saw yesterday the charging stations are about to be pushed through, so we're going to see a lot of money going towards charging stations. You have to think about how much infrastructure it's going to take to have hundreds of thousands of these around the country.

TODD MILLER:

:

Sure.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

That's going to be a big part of the market. I think there's some great opportunity there. We do a lot of bids for those. I think finding the right company and culture is huge. The group that I've been able to bring on is phenomenal. Everybody works extremely hard and I genuinely believe in the space and what we're doing. It makes a big difference to have like-minded individuals that, you know, we want to make money and we want to do well. But it's also it's like we want to see change and be part of that change.

TODD MILLER:

:

Do the right thing, absolutely.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Yeah.

TODD MILLER:

:

Good stuff. Well, this has been great Spencer. You know, we're we are getting close to the end of our time and greatly appreciate your time here today and the information you provided. I do have to ask, as we get close to the end, if you're willing to participate in something we call our rapid-fire questions. Now, these are just seven questions we're going to toss at you. All you got to do is just give a quick, immediate answer. And everyone needs to understand, if Spencer agrees to this, he has no idea what we're going to ask. So are you ready to do this and check out our rapid-fire questions?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Let's do it.

TODD MILLER:

:

Awesome.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

Question number one, what one word describes you the least?

TODD MILLER:

:

I think he might have blushed, I'm not sure, but.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

It depends who you ask. Probably some people would say quiet, but I would hope lazy.

TODD MILLER:

:

Hey, that's a good response. That's awesome. Second question, if you were in the Olympics, what event would you participate in?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I love soccer. I'm nowhere near good enough to be part of that. But I'd say soccer, sounds amazing.

TODD MILLER:

:

Well, it's all an if. That's good. I always joke with my wife that mine would be that one where those people ski and then stop and shoot at each other. And she explains to me that that's really not what's going on, but.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I know, decathlon would be sweet. I feel like curling is probably my best bet.

TODD MILLER:

:

Hey, there you go. Awesome.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

All right, question three. What language would you like to learn?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

French. I know Spanish, it's my second language, but I would love to know French.

TODD MILLER:

:

What draws you to that?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

It's super beautiful and nobody ever uses it.

TODD MILLER:

:

Yeah.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Which totally makes sense. I feel like more useful would be Mandarin. Probably should answer Mandarin.

TODD MILLER:

:

French is cool. Okay. Question four, favorite flavor of ice cream?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Chocolate, probably like peanut butter chocolate.

TODD MILLER:

:

Mm, yeah. When my wife was pregnant, that's what she craved was peanut butter chocolate ice cream. So I gained more weight than she did, but I got to eat peanut butter chocolate ice cream every night.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I feel like the more words in there, the better. Like the more supreme chocolates, like peanut butter, fudge, chocolate supreme.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

Alright, I got a serious one here. When you're dead and gone from this earth, what would you like to be remembered for?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I feel like hitting net zero and animal conservation are the two things I really want to be part of the rest of my life.

TODD MILLER:

:

Very neat, noble things. Good stuff. What is your favorite item that you have purchased in recent memory?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Probably my car. I love my Subaru. I mean, I want to say like a mountain bike or skis, but I just use that thing every day. We go on adventures down climbing in southern Utah every weekend and that thing hauls. So I love that.

TODD MILLER:

:

Subaru's done a nice job of both vehicles and their marketing. There's, there's something special about what they've created there, very cool.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Yeah. It's like a cult following.

TODD MILLER:

:

Yeah.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

Last one. How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

I don't know if I really get ready. I just feel like I'm in that bachelor phase where.

ETHAN YOUNG:

:

I feel that, yeah.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Yeah. Get ready, stay ready. Probably like, I don't know, 10 minutes. I'm, like, in that batch phase for sure.

TODD MILLER:

:

I admire that. That's awesome. I think I'm about 20 minutes. I think it increases the older you get, even though I don't have hair to worry about anymore. Yeah, there's other things. Anyway, this has been a real pleasure and privilege. Thank you so much. Is there anything we haven't covered today, Spencer, that you'd like to throw in here at the end?

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

No, I think that was pretty thorough. I think this is a great podcast and you nailed it. This is uh, construction talking about solar is my favorite thing right now.

TODD MILLER:

:

Well, it's crazy. Like I said, ever since we started this, I've wanted to have a solar expert on and finally made it happen. So and we've always been so far ahead on our recordings and our schedule and stuff. So, again, been great to have you. Thank you. If folks want to get in touch with you, what's the best way for them to do that.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

On our website, on homegridenergy.com. If you want a demo on the product, you can find us on the contact info. You can reach out to my personal line, which is 385-321-1850, I'd love to talk; I'll talk to anybody. And we love to help people understand more about solar in general or if they have battery questions, we're here for it.

TODD MILLER:

:

Great, and we'll put your information there in the show notes. And that was something that when I first came across you, I could tell that you were someone who was just passionate about what you're doing and happy to talk with anyone and spread the word and spread the education. So kudos to you. That's fantastic.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Thank you. Yeah, no, I think some really great people have come before us and kind of paved the way for us. Now it's our time to really get this change to happen.

TODD MILLER:

:

Well, best of luck. And we look forward to watching you further your career and further your business as well, it's fantastic.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

Thank you.

SPENCER CHRISTENSEN:

:

TODD MILLER: Well, thank you, everyone, for tuning in to this episode of Construction Disruption. Our special spotlighted guest has been Spencer Christensen of Lithion Battery and Home Grid Energy. We encourage you, please watch for future episodes of our podcast. We always have more great guests on tap. Don't forget to leave a review on Apple Podcasts or YouTube. Until the next episode though, change the world for someone. Make them smile, encourage them. Two very powerful things that we can do to change the world. In the meanwhile, God bless, take care. This is Isaiah Industries signing off until the next episode of Construction Disruption.

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