Wells Reserve First 100% Solar Nonprofit in Maine
Solar Power | April 6, 2015 | Posted by Fred Greenhalgh
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Two years ahead of schedule, the Wells Reserve at Laudholm has powered up its FOURTH solar electric array, making it the first nonprofit in Maine to be 100% solar-powered.
“This project set the bar for the nonprofit community, small businesses, and residents of Maine,” said Nik Charov, President, Laudholm Trust, “Our efforts prove that the solutions we need for energy independence and sustainability shine right here in Maine.”
The Wells Reserve’s aggressive move to solar started in March 2013, when they recognized that the marine research facility should do whatever it could to minimize fossil fuel combustion and the resulting carbon pollution because of the proven negative environmental impacts of ocean acidification, ocean warming and climate change.
Flash forward 2 years, and the facility now boasts huge energy conservation improvements, as well as four solar arrays: 35.5kw on the Ecology Center, 14.8kw on Alheim Commons, 5.61kw on the Post Doc House, and a 6.63kw ground mount system. The systems, cumulatively, will produce roughly 72,900 kilowatt-hours of electricity each year, enough to meet all electric needs at the Marine Research campus, including heating loads at several buildings.
Wells Reserve’s accomplishments were made possible thanks to support from NOAA, the Mattina R. Proctor Foundation, the Davis Conservation Foundation, the Town of Wells, Efficiency Maine, and Wells Reserve at Laudholm members.
“With rising seas and warming waters, estuaries serve as valuable barometers to monitor the mounting effects of global climate change,” said Senator King, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “So it is only fitting that the Wells Reserve at Laudholm, a valuable part of NOAA’s national network of estuarine research reserves, is also at the forefront of the important transition to renewable energy sources and the fight against climate change. This major solar power milestone will help combat climate change by reducing oil consumption and curbing carbon emissions, helping to protect and preserve this treasured area in southern Maine for generations to come.”