Solar energy will soon be generated in Cambridge, Md., on the grounds of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES). UMCES has signed an agreement with Standard Solar Inc. to install a 2 MW solar project on approximately 10 acres of its Horn Point Laboratory campus.
“While the work we do here helps others live more sustainably, it’s essential that we lead by example,” says UMCES president DonBoesch, who has led the University of Maryland’s Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change Initiative since 2008. “Higher education has a key role in shaping a sustainable society.”
Under the power purchase agreement (PPA), Standard Solar will install and operate the project in exchange for the use of land, and UMCES will buy the equivalent energy being generated over the next 20 years from the solar company. It is expected that the solar field will generate approximately 50% of the Horn Point Laboratory’s annual energy consumption. Construction is expected to begin this summer, with the project going online by spring 2018.
“The solar field is another example of how we are using innovative ways to manage Horn Point Laboratory in a way that reduces our environmental footprint and engages with the community,” says Mike Roman, director of the Horn Point Laboratory. This project also contributes to increasing Maryland’s in-state distributed electricity generation capacity and reducing the dependency on electricity imported from other states.”
UMCES has also been selected to receive a grant from the Maryland Energy Administration’s Solar PV Canopy with EV Charger Grant Program to offset the cost of four level-II electrical vehicle charging stations on campus.