A 675 kW solar system at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco has been awarded to PowerLight Corporation of Berkeley, California. The PV system and additional energy efficiency upgrades is a US$7.4 million project.San Francisco, California – November 22, 2002 [SolarAccess.com] One year ago, the Vote Solar Initiative successfully campaigned for a US$100 million solar bond that has made San Francisco a leader in the fight against global warming. The bond pays for the installation of solar panels, other clean energy measures, and energy efficiency projects for public buildings. “This project will prevent the release of over 4.6 million pounds a year of climate changing gases and pay for itself entirely from energy savings,” said Adam Browning of The Vote Solar Initiative. “Any city in America where breathing clean air and saving money are priorities should make plans to follow suit.” The Vote Solar Initiative is a non-profit organization that helps cities build Renewable Energy projects. The Moscone Center project consists of two parts: solar power generation and energy efficiency. The solar installation includes high efficiency, photovoltaic modules manufactured by Shell Solar and Sanyo Electric Company on the Moscone Center roof. The installation’s peak output is 675 kW, and it will produce roughly 825,000 kWh on a yearly basis. The energy efficiency measures to be implemented at Moscone will save an estimated 4.5 million kWh annually. Together, the solar installation and energy efficiency measures will produce and save the city enough power to generate electricity for 1,000 homes. Once construction starts, the solar electric system installation could be in place within 20 weeks, weather permitting. “Weaning our nation from fossil fuels should be understood as the most patriotic policy to which we can commit ourselves…When San Francisco dedicates its first solar project this week, it will celebrate a model that other cities can replicate. We need a chorus of ambitious local efforts like this if we are to meet the challenge before us without national leadership,” said Robert Redford, actor, environmental leader, and Vote Solar supporter. Emissions from fossil fuel electricity generation are the single largest contributor to global warming and are toxic to human health–shortening the lives of over 30,000 Americans a year. A recent study in the New York Times predicted that if current trends continue, global warming will cost the United States $68 billion annually by 2050 in pollution, weather damage, industrial and agricultural losses, and other expenses. The Vote Solar Initiative, a non-profit organization, was founded to fight global warming by helping cities implement large-scale and cost-effective Renewable Energy systems based on the model pioneered in San Francisco. The solar panels and energy efficiency technologies to be installed at the Moscone Center will reduce the building’s purchase of electricity by at least 5,325,000 kWh a year, generating annual savings of US$639,000.