One of New Jersey’s most advanced solar energy systems was unveiled in Sewell, New Jersey at The Educational Information and Resource Center (EIRC), a public agency specializing in education programs and services. The new 88 kW Sharp photovoltaic (PV) system that was evaluated and designed by Solara Energy, is the heart of EIRC’s new Green Apple Program designed to highlight real-world practices that preserve the environment and reduce energy consumption.Mahwah, New Jersey – November 20, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] “EIRC is a strong advocate of ‘green’ education initiatives, and has a long history of pioneering effective solutions in education,” said Charles Ivory, Executive Director of EIRC. “We have instituted a number of successful activities, including the installation of solar panels on our roof, that help to reduce peak demand and conserve finite resources. We’re proud to serve as a model for schools and other educational facilities that are seeking ways to reduce energy consumption, while supporting clean air and renewable energies.” The new system featuring 480, 185-watt solar panels on EIRC’s roof was showcased during a ceremony at the agency’s offices in Sewell, New Jersey. The system was installed by R.C.L. Enterprises of Alloway, New Jersey. “East Coast markets are experiencing significant growth in solar energy use,” said Ron Kenedi, General Manager of Sharp Electronics’ Solar Systems Division. “Sharp’s newly-opened solar panel manufacturing facility in Memphis, Tennessee is set to meet increasing demand for solar energy in the U.S. EIRC’s Green Apple Program is a great example of what can be done with today’s advanced solar power technology.” The project was made possible by an incentive offered by New Jersey BPU, which enabled EIRC to offset the initial cost of the solar system installation. BPU’s Clean Energy Program contributed $370,000 to the EIRC project. Receiving a 60 percent rebate on the total cost of the system, EIRC estimates it will be able to recover its investment in seven years. The BPU strongly promotes solar energy in its effort to advance the use of renewable energy in the state. “Working closely with Sharp’s Solar Systems Division and New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU), we designed a solar energy system that will save EIRC over $1 million over the life of the system – compelling news for other schools, businesses and homeowners who are considering clean energy alternatives,” said Peter Burcat, Co-founder and Executive Vice President of Solara Energy. “The BPU is proud to partner with EIRC to get solar panels on the roof of their building. This system will provide clean renewable energy from the sun and will also be used to teach EIRC’s many visitors about the benefits of solar energy, ” said Jeanne M. Fox, President of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. “Under the Governor’s leadership, New Jersey has instituted a number of initiatives to make New Jersey a world leader for the promotion and use of clean, renewable energy in order to reduce pollution, conserve natural resources, increase self-reliance and establish a secure energy future for New Jersey. I commend the EIRC for their support of the state’s vision for a cleaner, renewable energy New Jersey.” The U.S. market for solar energy was 48 MW in 2002 and is expected to climb to over 120MW by 2005 and 300MW by 2010, according to Sharp Solar.