St Albans school boasts largest solar array

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St Albans school boasts largest solar array

Thu, 11/30/2017 - 5:00am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Saint Albans Town Educational Center hosted an event to celebrate their new 2089-panel solar array, the largest on any school in the state. The array will meet 100% of SATEC’s electricity needs, plus share extra production with the nearby Bellows Falls Academy, St Albans’ high school. Waterbury-based SunCommon is SATEC’s solar partner on the project.

The newly unified Maple Run Unified School District now includes both schools, making the shared solar array possible.  The project will save the District approximately $400,000 with no initial capital cost to St. Albans taxpayers.

"I am pleased we are able to help the environment while saving a bit of money with this SATEC project, but we're just getting started.” Dr. Kevin Dirth, the District’s Superintendent said.  “Our newly merged school district has also approved projects at St. Albans City School and Collins Perley Sports Complex.  Why not put our rooftops and parking lots to work, powering the education of our 2700 students?"

SunCommon photos of the SATEC solar project, which is the state's largest school-located array.

While SunCommon has grown to become Vermont’s largest solar installer, its staff prides themselves on living and working in the communities that they serve. Mike McCarthy, SunCommon’s Solar Project Consultant, said, “I live on Bank Street, here in St. Albans, and drive by SATEC every day.  I used to think, 'It's crazy that there isn't solar on that big, open roof!'  Now I drive past and smile.  It has been an enormous pleasure to work with SATEC to build this project - the largest rooftop solar array on any school in our state."

When schools go solar, the capacity for bringing sustainability and environmental curriculum into classes is increased. Principal of SATEC, Angela Stebbins, said their 8th graders opened up the semester focusing on climate change and the importance of reducing their carbon footprints. The entire 8th grade was in attendance for the event and four students spoke about the research they conducted concluding that climate change is real.

About SunCommon:

As Vermont’s largest solar business, SunCommon believes that everyone has the right to a healthy environment and brighter future – and renewable energy is where it starts. Energy from the sun can power our lives and build vibrant communities. Our mission is to tear down barriers to clean energy and use our business as a force for good.

SunCommon was chartered as one of Vermont's pioneering Benefit Corporations and is a Certified BCorp based on a rigorous third party assessment of our commitment to the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit. The business is headquartered in Waterbury where most of our 100 workers operate out of Vermont’s largest net-positive office building, which produces more energy than it uses. For more information, go to www.suncommon.com and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter @suncommon.

About St. Albans Town Educational Center:

SATEC is part of the Maple Run Unified School District which serves the communities of St. Albans City, St. Albans Town, and Fairfield and has 2,700 students, 600 employees, and 6 schools. SATEC is home to students in pre-kindergarten through 8th grade.

Source: SunCommon. http://www.suncommon.com/vt/commercial-solar-vermont/