Located just north of the city on Route 7, the official dedication ceremony took place on June 22, 2010. Vermont's Governor James Douglas was also on hand.
The 50-kilowatt solar project includes 33 individual, stationary modules made up of 264 solar panels, each 3 x 5 feet wide, mounted eight at a time. While the solar project could produce enough energy to power up to 50 homes, the project will more than likely provide enough energy to power 10 or 11 homes per year.
Touted as the “most publicly accessible solar project” in Vermont, the new project also includes an educational center for students and the public. The center features six museum-style educational displays that provide information on alternative energy including wind, water, biomass and sunlight.
Information on “poo power”, or CVPS Cow Power, is also available. CVPS customers can enroll in the CVPS Cow Power renewable energy plan. The plan not only helps the environment, but also helps support Vermont’s dairy farms as well.
Along with self-guided tours, formal tours will also be available for schools and organizations. A mulch path was added in an effort to encourage people to take a stroll around the solar array to get an up-close-and-personal look at solar energy production.
Students were instrumental in the hands-on project. Students helped design an on-site equipment storage building and assisted in the installation of the solar panels. They also were involved in the mulch path and parking. The Stafford Technical Center and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 300, helped in the building of the project.
In the future, the project may also include one or two wind turbines which would replace a wind measurement tower. According to the CVPS website, the $400,000 project was “funded by CVPS, a rebate on insurance related to the sale of Vermont Yankee and a grant from the Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund.”
Photo courtesy of Sustainable Rutland
For more information on solar energy, visit eBoom's Solar Energy Learning page.
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