FORT WORTH MUSEUM OF SCIENCE AND HISTORY AND GREEN MOUNTAIN ENERGY COMPANY “FLIP THE SWITCH” FOR NEW SOLAR ARRAY
Dedication ceremony held today; celebrates Green Mountain’s 21st solar donation through its Big Texas Sun Club®
FORT WORTH, TX – The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is now partially powered by the sun, thanks to Green Mountain Energy Company and its customers. Green Mountain, Texas’ first retail electric provider to offer cleaner energy, donated a solar array system to the Museum. The new solar array will help reduce the Museum’s carbon footprint and energy costs, and will be used as a teaching tool for Museum guests.
Green Mountain’s Super Earth Mascot, The Museum’s Dynamo Mascot, officials from the Museum, representatives from Green Mountain, and a local child “flipped the switch” of the solar array today during a ceremonial dedication. The dedication kicked off the Museum’s annual Sun-Earth Day, which celebrates our planet’s relationship to the sun. The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is located at 1600 Gendy St.
The Museum celebrated Sun-Earth Day with a variety of outdoor demonstrations including: solar cooking demonstrations; safe solar viewing; solar panel demonstrations; and the opening of a new planetarium show, Fragile Planet, produced by the California Academy of Sciences.
Green Mountain Energy® Solar at Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is a 10.2 kilowatt (kW) solar system mounted on the museum’s roof. It is the first array funded and built by Green Mountain in Fort Worth and the Museum’s first solar array.
“Green Mountain Energy Company is proud to partner with the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, an organization that cares about the environment, to help reach and educate tens of thousands of museum visitors about solar energy,” said Paul Markovich, senior vice president, Residential Services for Green Mountain Energy Company. “Building this solar facility supports our mission to ‘change the way power is made’ at the same time we are giving back to the Fort Worth community, where our customers and employees live, work, shop, play and attend school.”
The solar array was built with 60 large photovoltaic (PV) solar panels that convert sunlight into electricity and will produce over 20,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of clean energy annually. The electricity produced by this solar array can provide enough electricity in one year to power the Museum’s Urban Lantern for eight years and it is estimated that it will save the Museum more than $283,000 in electricity costs over its 30-year lifetime.
The solar array is expected to offset nearly 27,000 pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually, which has the same environmental impact of 7,700 households turning off their lights for a day; taking 850 cars off the road for a day or recycling over 3,000 pounds of newspapers.
“We are sincerely grateful for Green Mountain Energy Company’s generosity in funding this solar array, which is already helping to reduce the Museum’s carbon footprint through the use of solar energy,” said the Museum Senior Vice President of Development and Marketing Carl Hamm. “The donation will also be incorporated into new educational programs which will help our guests grasp a better understanding of this highly efficient, cost-effective type of energy production.”
Green Mountain also funded the educational program, Solar Discovery Cart, which will educate Museum guests about solar energy and its benefits. The cart will contain a model of the Museum’s Urban Lantern and a solar array. Guests can learn in an interactive manner how solar energy works by using a flashlight to shine light on the array, and watch the power light up the model Urban Lantern. Additionally, guests can observe and cross examine a small section of a solar panel. The cart also will contain an image of the solar array on the Museum’s roof and a fact sheet about solar arrays in general.
Green Mountain funded the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History’s solar array and educational program through its Big Texas Sun Club®, a unique program in which its Texas customers can choose to support solar energy installations in the state by paying an additional $5 on their monthly electric bill (for information, visit http://greenmountainenergysunclub.com/about/). This is the 21st solar project built thanks to the support of Big Texas Sun Club members. With this installation, Green Mountain’s Big Texas Sun Club will be responsible for creating 195kW of new solar energy capacity in Texas since 2002.
About the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History
The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., every day except Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. For more information about the Museum visit www.fortworthmuseum.org or call 817-255-9300. The new Museum building, created by internationally acclaimed architects Legorreta + Legorreta with Gideon Toal, is located in the heart of Fort Worth’s Cultural District. The world-class, 166,000 square-foot facility features a collection of new, interactive exhibits and programs developed by the Museum’s staff and a team of nationally recognized designers in support of the Museum’s dedication to informal, discovery-based learning for all.
About Green Mountain Energy Company
Green Mountain, the nation’s leading retail provider of cleaner energy and carbon offset solutions, was founded in 1997 “to change the way power is made.” The company is the longest serving green power marketer in the U.S. and in 2009 was ranked the “Highest in Business Customer Satisfaction with Retail Electric Service” by J.D. Power and Associates1. Green Mountain offers consumers and businesses the choice of clean electricity products from renewable sources such as wind and water, as well as a variety of carbon offset products. Green Mountain customers have collectively helped avoid over 9.8 billion pounds of CO2 emissions. For more information, visit GreenMountain.com.
1Green Mountain Energy Company received the highest numerical score among business electric service retailers in Texas in the proprietary J.D. Power and Associates 2009 Texas Business Retail Electric Provider Satisfaction StudySM. Study based on responses from 2,231 businesses measuring 7 retailers and measures opinions of businesses with their electric service provider. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of consumers surveyed May-June and September-October 2009. Your experiences may vary. Visit jdpower.com.