Largest Solar Energy Project for Nevada Underway

A massive 214.5 kW solar array, currently under construction on a Nevada business, will become the state’s largest photovoltaic (PV) installation, according to the project’s installers. Recent state legislation has helped created a market for the clean, locally generated electricity of such renewable energy systems.

Las Vegas, Nevada – January 6, 2004 [] The PV system is located in Henderson on the roof of the newly constructed Andrew Lessman’s Your Vitamins Inc. production facility. The privately held dietary supplement company recently moved from Santa Monica, California to Henderson in 1996. According to the Las Vegas Business Press, the company is one of the few that manufacture and distribute their own vitamins, producing more than one billion capsules a year. The solar installation is part of the company’s $10 million building expansion that will allow the firm to boost their employee numbers from 300 to a total of 400 employees. Las Vegas Solar Electric is working as the solar electrical subcontractor for TWC Construction on the project. The system is made up of 75 watt AstroPower solar modules applied to the PowerLight PowerGuard roofing system. The installation, which will cover an area of 23,000 square feet, is scheduled for completion by mid-January of 2004. This system should produce enough electricity every day to power 20 to 25 homes that consume 30 kWh AC per day. Las Vegas Solar said it will produce approximately 3/4 of a MWh of AC electricity per day, 21,000 kWh AC per month. The environmental benefits are even more tangible. At those energy production numbers, the system should offset the equivalent 30,215 barrels of crude oil; offset pollution equivalent to 26,000,000 car miles NOT driven; reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 21,000,000 lbs. (carbon dioxide); and save over 14,000,000 gallons of water that is used in central power plant electrical production. (1kWh equals 1 gallon of water in a water cooled centralized electrical power plant, according to Las Vegas Solar) Once installed, the system will be the first commercial scale distributed generation system to offer renewable energy credits for sale to the privately owned utilities in Nevada. In 2001, Nevada’s Gov. Kenny Guinn passed a law requiring electric utilities to obtain 5 percent of the power they sell instate from green energy outlets starting in 2003. That percentage will gradually increase to 15 percent by 2015, making Nevada the third largest producer of green power in the country, behind California and Texas.
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