The Kentucky National Guard gets greener with second solar project

April 8, 2010

CONTACT: David Altom, 502-607-1562, cell 502-229-3227

Artemus, Ky. – The Kentucky National Guard does it again with their green initiative, this time at their facility in Artemus.

Crews have just completed the installation of solar panels at the 558-acre Harold L. Disney Training Center (HLDTC) in Knox County. The training center will be partially powered by the 84 kilowatt photovoltaic solar arrays found on the administration building and two of the center’s barracks. The 396 solar panels on the three buildings in Artemus are “grid-tied” and will produce approximately 90,000 kilowatt hours of electricity. The current consumption of electricity at HLDTC is 201,000 kilowatt hours annually; this system will produce 45% of current site requirements.

A similar project was recently completed at the Kentucky National Guard’s Wendell H. Ford Regional Training Center in Muhlenberg County.

“I want to commend the Kentucky National Guard for their stewardship of the land as well as the taxpayer’s dollars,” said Gov. Steve Beshear. “This new solar installation is a significant step toward providing a quality training facility for our troops while relieving the financial burden for the state.”

Both solar initiatives were driven by Kentucky’s Comprehensive Energy Plan released by Governor Beshear and Presidential Executive Orders EO 13423 and EO 13514. The state and federal and directives strive for a greener environment and reduced CO2 emissions through the utilization of renewable energy sources such as solar.

“The Kentucky Guard and the Department of Military Affairs continue to implement energy projects that include geothermal, solar and high-efficiency energy upgrades,” said Maj. Gen. Edward W. Tonini, adjutant general for Kentucky. “This is a great opportunity for the Kentucky Guard and we intend to meet Governor Beshear’s mandate as expeditiously as possible.”

The project was completed in association with Finance and Administration Cabinet through the utilization of $553,499 in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds.

“It has been a pleasure to complete this second large solar power project with the Kentucky National Guard,” said Michelle Greenfield CEO of Third Sun. “This pair of projects represents a great step in improving the energy efficiency and conservation of Kentucky’s facilities. Third Sun was happy to be a part of these important ARRA projects.”

The system is capable of producing approximately 90,000 kilowatt hours of renewable green energy annually. Reductions in green-house emissions by 71.2 tons are expected, equivalent to the CO2 emissions from 7,270 gallons of gas consumed, 150 barrels of oil consumed, green house gas emissions from 12.4 passenger vehicles or the amount of carbon sequestered by the planting of 1,657 tree seedlings grown for 10 years. The subsequent reduction in commercial power, potential flow back credits to the utility companies and the sale of sustainable/renewable energy credits on the open market should reduce the Wendell H. Ford Regional Training Center’s annual utility expense by $35,000 to $55,000 or more.

The project was designed by Kentucky-based CMTA Consulting Engineers, the 2009 recipient of the Governor’s Energy Leadership Award.

The panels were manufactured by Evergreen Solar out of Devens, Mass.

Third Sun Solar and Wind Power was the design-build contractor specializing in solar power systems. The firm provides system design, service and installation of solar and wind electric systems. Third Sun is proud to employ four NABCEP Certified Solar PV Installers (North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners, the industry’s highest standard for installers).

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