DEPTFORD TWP - SOLAR PANELS MAKE FOR CLEAN ELECTRICITY
Date: 020517 From: http://www.nj.com/ By Shawn Menzies, Staff Writer, Gloucester County Times, 05/17/02 Deptford Twp.
Creating electricity in Gloucester County got a little cleaner Thursday, as state officials helped a national energy provider unveil the first and largest solar electric generator in South Jersey. Approximately 1,300 solar panels have been mounted atop the BJ's Wholesale Club store, located off of Deptford Center Road.
The opportunity to make electricity production cleaner developed from a partnership between the state, the Texas-based Green Mountain Energy Co. and Solar Power Electric. "On behalf of Gov. James E. McGreevey, the state and the Board of Public Utilities, I am proud to mark this historic partnership," said Jeanne M. Fox, president of the state BPU. "Renewable energy is one of the most important products in the future of New Jersey and future of our society which is why New Jersey is committed to identifying and using renewable energy resources."
Clifton Payne Jr., eastern regional president for Green Mountain Energy Co., said solar energy is further proof that their customers can help change the way power is made in New Jersey. "Making electricity is the leading cause of industrial air pollution in the U.S., emitting billions of tons of carbon dioxide annually," Payne said. "The large solar electricity facility will help avoid 40 tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually. That reduces as much carbon dioxide pollution as not driving more than 2,000 trips by car the length of the Atlantic City Expressway, adding up to more than 90,000 miles."
The solar panels will be maintained by Sun Power Electric, who also installed the panels. The panels are 2-foot by 4-foot that take up more than 12,000 square feet of the store's roof, which officials said is enough to fill the Phillies' infield at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia. The 52-kilowatt system will feed its generated electricity in a grid that supplied power through the region, officials said.
Green Mountain began offering New Jersey residents solar generated electricity in March of 2000. Just this month, the state announced it would be purchasing electricity from Green Mountain Energy Co. Officials said this is the first large solar electricity generating project in South Jersey which is built under the New Jersey Clean Energy program, and will be known as the Green Mountain Energy Solar at Southern New Jersey
. Approximately 60 fourth graders from Sewell Elementary School in Mantua Township, wearing gold colored sun shaped plastic masks, helped dedicate the solar electricity generator. Sara Dill, manager of energy for BJ's, said the company is pleased to help provide a way for clean energy. "By providing our roof top as a location for solar electric generating facilities, we are putting latent space to use for a great purpose. BJ's is also in a partnership with Green Mountain and has roof top solar panels on stores in Middletown, R.I., Plymouth Meeting Pa. and >North Dartmouth, Mass. * * * Shawn Menzies can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. (c) 2002 NJ.com. All Rights Reserved.