Friday, August 29, 2008

Registered and Insured

Last night we went to the SAAQ office in Longueuil to transfer ownership and register the vehicle. The 2000 Mazda Protege is now officially ours, parked in our driveway and waiting for work to get under way.

The e-Protege on EV Album

Today the kids were a little excited and wanted to go for a ride so we decided to go to Ile Ste-Helene to spend a few hours. The kids enjoyed playing in the park as Elizabeth and I snapped some pictures of them. We then made our way over to the Biosphere which was just a short walk away. We felt like tourists in our own city. The Biosphere, a huge metal sphere structure is a very interesting place. It houses several exhibits about our Canadian environment as well as the global environment. There are interactive activities for kids (much like the science and technology museums). We visited an Ecological House on site which was quite amazing. It was a home designed by university students from several local universities which was entered in a contest for sustainable living held in the United States last year. The home had a very basic layout but was loaded with the latest technologies like solar PV panels, solar thermal panels, triple pane windows for natural light, efficient energy star appliances, and an induction cook top. It featured radiant floor heating that used hot water heated by the solar thermal panels. This design was made to house two people but one can easily imagine a similar design but a little bigger to house a family of four. The power generated by the solar PV panels is stored in battery packs and the inverters convert the dc electric power to low consumption ac electric appliances and lighting fixtures. The water used for the toilet is recycled rainwater that is captured and filtered through a green roof portion of the house. The complete package was very cool. Makes you wish these homes were readily available for purchase.


While we were visiting the Ecological House, I received a call from the insurance rep I was speaking to yesterday. Her name was Tracy and she had good news. I got word that the insurance company would indeed insure our car after the EV Conversion was completed. I was simply told to call back the insurance company when the work is finished with the total investment/value so that I can be quoted with a new premium for the adjusted value.

Afterwards, we went back into the Biosphere and took the elevator up to the 5th and 6th floors where we saw even more interesting things and got a great view of the Montreal skyline from within the metallic spherical structure. To our surprise, we came across a ZENN electric car. We were able to touch it, look at it up close and take more pictures. We learned about Bucky or Richard Buckminster Fuller, the creator of the Biosphere. He was truly a man ahead of his time with great ideas on sustainable development. His motto was "Do more with less".


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