Dedication ceremony for Galveston’s first solar-powered school held today
Event also celebrates beginning of repair for school’s roof following Hurricane Ike
GALVESTON, Texas – April 21, 2009 —To commemorate Earth Day 2009, Satori Elementary School in Galveston and Green Mountain Energy Company today unveiled the school’s new solar array. The installation is the first solar photovoltaic (PV) solar system to power a school in Galveston and one of the first solar arrays in Galveston.
Green Mountain donated the solar panel system to the parent cooperative school for K-5th graders. The solar array will help educate students about the benefits of solar energy through a monitoring website, while also providing environmental benefits. Satori Elementary School is located near downtown Galveston at 2503 Sealy St.
Green Mountain’s “Super Earth” mascot; representatives from Green Mountain and Satori Elementary School; John F. Thomas, PhD, President, Satori Parent Board; John Campbell, Satori Parent Board Alumnae; Joe Jaworski, Mayoral Candidate; and students from Satori Elementary School; members of the community; and the school’s board participated in today’s event to officially “flip the ceremonial switch” of the solar array.
The Green Mountain Energy® Solar at Satori Elementary is 2.8 kilowatts (kW) and is mounted on the facility’s roof. It is expected to produce about 5,500 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity per year by converting sunlight into electricity. The solar array consists of 16 solar panels and covers about 240 square feet of roof space. These panels will offset approximately 7,300 pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) each year, the annual equivalent of planting 439 trees or not driving 8,100 miles.
“Green Mountain Energy Company is proud to partner with Satori Elementary School to help educate students about solar energy and help the school recover from Hurricane Ike,” said Mark Lamping, vice president of Sales, Green Mountain Energy Company. “Green Mountain has been serving customers in Galveston and the surrounding communities since 2002. Donating solar systems like this one helps us give back to the communities where our customers live, work, shop and play, while supporting our mission to change the way power is made.”
Green Mountain funded Satori’s new solar array through its Big Texas Sun Club®, a unique program in which Green Mountain’s Texas customers can choose to support solar energy installations in Texas by paying an additional $5 on their monthly Green Mountain Energy® electric bill (for information, visit www.bigtexassunclub.com).This is the 16th solar project built in Texas thanks to the Big Texas Sun Club. With this installation, Green Mountain’s Big Texas Sun Club has been responsible for creating approximately 155kW of new solar energy capacity in Texas since 2002. Green Mountain is Texas’ only electric provider dedicated to cleaner electricity.
Satori Elementary School was the first Galveston school to re-open following Hurricane Ike in spite of serious damage to the first floor of the school property.
“We are elated that Green Mountain donated this solar array to our school and hope it will mold an impression on the minds of Satori’s children and their families and engage them in a collective effort aimed at the well-being of our community and country,” said Dr. Fred Thomas, president of the Satori Elementary School Parent Board. “The solar array is a giant step in our Ike recovery efforts, our efforts to go green and our efforts to provide leadership in Galveston toward an eco-educated citizenry. It also promotes the Satori practice of actually applying what we learn into everyday action.”
The solar panels were installed by Houston-based Standard Renewable Energy (SRE). This is the 6th solar array SRE has installed for Green Mountain Energy Company and the Big Texas Sun Club.
About Earth Day
Wednesday, April 22, is the 39th annual Earth Day, an event many people will celebrate by focusing on ways to reduce, reuse and recycle to help conserve energy and reduce pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Earth Day began in 1970 as an annual day to recognize the wonders and beauty of our planet and has grown into a week-long — and in some cases, month-long — celebration.
About Satori Elementary School
Satori Elementary School was founded in 1980 with a mission to provide a nurturing environment where children discover fundamentals within the context of an integrated, real-world curriculum. The school serves children in kindergarten through fifth grade in small, multi-age classes. Each class has a two-grade span with an average of 12 students assigned to each classroom teacher. The school has a full-time teaching staff of four and a part-time staff of three teachers. Satori is committed to helping each child reach their full potential using innovative teaching, individual attention, and parental involvement. Satori is not associated with any religion. Satori requires parental involvement in the school, ranging from volunteering in school activities and fundraising efforts to serving as Board officers of the school. For more information, visit www.satorischool.net.
About Green Mountain Energy Company
Green Mountain, the nation’s leading 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 was ranked the highest in residential customer satisfaction with retail electric service in Texas by J.D. Power and Associates. Green Mountain offers consumers and businesses the choice of cleaner electricity products from renewable sources such as wind and water and carbon offset products through its BeGreen division (BeGreenNow.com). Green Mountain customers have collectively helped avoid over 4.9 million tons of CO2 emissions. For more information, visit GreenMountain.com.
1 Green Mountain Energy Company received the highest numerical score among residential electric service providers in Texas in the proprietary J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Texas Residential Retail Electric Service Satisfaction StudySM. Study based on responses from 2,572 consumers measuring 8 providers and measures opinions of consumers with their electric service provider. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of consumers surveyed in June 2008. Your experiences may vary. Visit jdpower.com.
Satori Elementary School
Billie Rinaldi, Director, Satori Elementary School Satori
Stephanie Thomas, Eco Coordinator/Art Teacher
(409) 763-7022, firstname.lastname@example.org
Green Mountain Energy Company