Solar, Storage

Solar B&B in Wisconsin

Inn Serendipity, a bed and breakfast and organic farm just outside Monroe, Wisconsin, is generating interest from visitors while it harvests and converts solar energy into electricity.

Madison, Wisconsin – July 22, 2002 [SolarAccess.com] Inn Serendipity serves as a showplace for energy conservation and Renewable Energy production. Partial funding for its solar, photovoltaic (PV) project was made available from Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy Renewable Energy program in the form of a Cash-Back Reward. Located an hour south of Madison, the inn encourages guests and visitors to conserve energy and develop environmentally and socially responsible lifestyles. Its five-acre organic farm provides fruits, vegetables, and herbs for the owners and guests. The inn features two solar water heating systems, a super energy-efficient Sun Frost refrigerator, an energy efficient woodstove and Energy Star qualified appliances. Inn Serendipity’s 480W PV system, installed and used for the first time this summer, gathers energy from the sun through four PV panels placed on the south side of an equipment shed. Inside the shed, the solar electricity is stored for later use or converted into AC current for use throughout the farm. On average, the PV system will generate about 536 kWh of electricity per year for the farm and home based business. Over the expected 50-year lifespan of the PV system, approximately 26,800 kWh of electricity will be generated preventing the emissions of about 43,200 pounds of carbon dioxide (C02), one of the most common emissions from coal-fired electricity generation plants. “We enjoy sharing our experiences with Renewable Energy with our guests and others visiting the farm for informal tours or workshops through the Midwest Renewable Energy Association,” said John Ivanko, co-owner of Inn Serendipity. “Adding a Renewable Energy system is one way of many to mitigate the effects of fossil-fuel based energy use, to diminish pollutants and help lessen America’s dependency on energy from overseas. It’s important to demonstrate that it can be done.” Funding for Renewable Energy projects is available from Wisconsin Focus on Energy’s Renewable Energy program in the form of statewide grants, low-interest rate loans and cash back rewards. Focus on Energy is a public-private partnership that provides energy efficiency and renewable energy information and services to the state’s energy utility customers.