Cornell solar array

UVA Purchases Entire Output of 120-Acre Solar Facility

Cornell solar arrayThe University of Virginia (UVA) has signed a 25-year agreement to purchase the entire output of a 120-acre solar facility in Middlesex County, Virginia.

The Puller Solar Facility, which is being developed by Coronal Energy, will produce an estimated 15 megawatts of alternating current. The initiative is a partnership between UVA and Dominion Energy.

The school previously announced the construction of the Hollyfield Solar Facility, a 17 megawatt solar array, which, together with new facility in Middlesex County, will offset approximately 21% of the University’s electric demand.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said on news.virginia.edu, “Once again, UVA is providing public sector leadership on carbon emission reduction and renewable power generation in Virginia. This project, along with UVA’s Hollyfield and the Commonwealth’s Oceana Solar facilities, now means we are nearly halfway to achieving the 8% renewable procurement goal I set out in 2015. I look forward to working with other public universities to follow UVA’s lead and power their educational operations with renewable energy.”

The new solar facility will reduce the school’s carbon footprint by 15,000 metric tons per year, while also reducing more than 19 metric tons of nitrogen output. These cuts will help UVA stick to its pledge of reducing its carbon and nitrogen output 25% by the year 2025.

According to the site, with the school’s Facilities Management’s Delta Force program, which pursues deep energy savings, the University has reduced consumption in 51 of UVA’s most energy-intensive buildings, which constitute more than 4.6 million square feet of built space. This has contributed to a 10% reduction in overall building energy use intensity since 2010.

Construction on the Puller Solar Facility will begin later this year, with commercial operations occurring by the end of 2018.

Other universities throughout the U.S. have also recently engaged in energy efficiency initiatives, including the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut and St. John’s University in Minnesota.

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