Patagonia Completes Solar Power Carport

The Patagonia clothing company, which has a history of socially and environmentally conscious actions, recently completed the installation of a large solar photovoltaic carport project at its Ventura, California headquarters.

The 66.6 kW Sharp Solar system incorporates 360 185-watt Sharp panels on three custom-built carports erected in the parking lot. The eye-catching structure produces an amount of energy equivalent to the energy used in approximately 60 California homes during peak usage periods and also shades cars during the day, according to the project’s designers. The structures are part of the company’s stated goal of becoming energy self-sufficient. “Our new solar system proves energy independence can be aesthetically pleasing,” said Jill Dumain, Patagonia. “Patagonia believes in using business to inspire solutions to the environmental crisis, and our solar solution is just one example of our commitment to that belief.” Patagonia uses various forms of renewable energy, including solar electricity and wind power, for its facilities worldwide. In 1996, Patagonia incorporated a 5-kW solar system into its Reno, Nevada distribution center. Realizing that solar is the most viable form of renewable energy when it comes to supporting its corporate energy efficiency goals, Patagonia plans to expand the system at the Reno facility to produce more energy. “Patagonia demonstrates a strong commitment to the environment through its use of clean energy technologies and, with the installation of a solar system, it will now be able to fulfill some of its own power needs,” said Ron Kenedi, vice president, Sharp’s Solar Energy Solutions Group. “This system will provide twelve percent of the power for its headquarters, while the carports will provide much-appreciated sheltered parking for employees.”
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