Electricity from the sun atop New York BJ's
Marlborough, Massachusetts, December 8, 2005 - BJ's Wholesale Club in Saratoga, NY is using energy from the sun to help power its store thanks to a cutting-edge solar energy system on its rooftop. The system, using solar panels manufactured by Evergreen Solar, Inc., is BJ's largest North American solar installation. The technology was unveiled to the public at a recent store event, where guests toured the system to learn how it uses the sun's power to save energy and help protect the environment.
The 80,000 square-foot 100-kilowatt system, consisting of 912 photovoltaic (PV) panels covering nearly the entire roof of the building, has been running smoothly since starting operations last spring. Operating year-round, it should produce over 100,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, enough to power 13 average homes. The installation is also expected to offset the release of more than 100,000 pounds of carbon dioxide - a leading cause of global warming - and other harmful greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere each year. A permanent in-store display allows shoppers to view information about the solar power system.
BJ's Wholesale Club has embarked on a chain-wide program to purchase energy from clean resources. Working with the Sun Power Electric division of Conservation Services Group, which installed the Saratoga system, BJ's now has rooftop solar power plants operating on several stores throughout the Northeast. The company donates its roof space to Sun Power Electric, owner and installer of the power systems. BJ's also signs a long-term agreement to purchase the power, providing the stable income that allows project partners to obtain financing.
"While the residential market for solar power systems has been booming for years, we're seeing a sharp increase in commercial use," said Dr. Terry Bailey, Evergreen Senior Vice President. "Large-scale applications on commercial buildings further validate solar power as a viable energy solution in the U.S. and around the globe."
"BJ's was one of this nation's earliest adopters of commercial solar power systems," said Stephen L. Cowell, CEO of Conservation Services Group. "The use of their rooftops enables us to produce clean electricity efficiently, without having to use valuable land resources."
"Member response has been enthusiastic and the system is operating smoothly," said Terry Civic, BJ's Manager of Energy. "Using clean, renewable energy to help control our utility costs is definitely a winning combination, especially in light of the sharp increase in utility rates."
About Evergreen Solar
Evergreen Solar, Inc. develops, manufactures and markets solar power products using the Company's proprietary low-cost manufacturing technologies. The products provide reliable and environmentally clean electric power in global markets. Solar power applications include complete power systems for electric utility customers choosing to generate their own environmentally benign power, as well as wireless power for remote homes, water pumping, lighting and rural electrification. For more information, visit www.evergreensolar.com.
Evergreen Solar(r) is a registered trademark of Evergreen Solar, Inc.
About Conservation Services Group
CSG owns and operates solar electric power plants in eight states totaling 496 kW-DC, and have been involved in the design, construction, monitoring and maintenance of these and other systems totaling more than 2.2 MW-DC since 1999. Sun Power Electric, a CSG division, is the nation's first all Photovoltaic (PV) utility and is dedicated to promoting and supporting the production of solar electricity for commercial and industrial facilities, as well as private homes. All CSG solar power plants can be viewed and analyzed at www.soltrex.com. CSG was established in 1984 and founded Sun Power Electric in 1998.