Avon Old Farms School Unveils the Largest Solar Installation at a Private School in New England

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The Avon Old Farms School celebrated their newly installed 205kW solar electric system, which is the largest operating solar array of any private school in Connecticut and all of New England. On October 16th at 2PM, Avon Old Farms School hosted a dedication ceremony at the Susan Casey Brown Student Center. Senator Chris Dodd and Chair of the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund Board Norma Glover both delivered remarks.

The Avon Old Farms School celebrated their newly installed 205kW solar electric system, which is the largest operating solar array of any private school in Connecticut and all of New England. On October 16th at 2PM, Avon Old Farms School hosted a dedication ceremony at the Susan Casey Brown Student Center. Senator Chris Dodd and Chair of the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund Board Norma Glover both delivered remarks. The dedication ceremony also commemorated the life and legacy of the late faculty member Mike Stradley whose efforts and visions of a sustainable campus helped make this project a reality.

Located on the roof of the Jennings Fairchild Ice Rink, the solar panels will power a significant portion of the core campus buildings reducing the school's CO2 emissions by 6.3 million pounds over the 25 year life of the system. This CO2 reduction is equivalent to planting 30,000 trees or eliminating 6.9 million driving miles. The electricity generated by the solar energy system will cost the school about 30% less than electricity from the utility.

The solar system was installed by Connecticut-based Alteris Renewables, recently ranked the fastest growing renewable energy company in the Northeast. As the third party owner of the solar panels, EOS Ventures financed the system enabling Avon to go solar without the usual large upfront capital investment. Additional financial support from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) was secured for this project.

"I am proud that our school is positioned at the forefront of the sustainability movement in our country," said Kenneth LaRocque, Headmaster of Avon Old Farms, "We are passionately committed to reducing our energy consumption and waste, and to creating a sustainable campus."

The large capacity of this solar electric system highlights Avon's commitment to a sustainable environment. Along with a multitude of other energy saving initiatives at the school, this solar array demonstrates that Avon Old Farms is a leader among the Green Schools Alliance, an association of K to12 public, private and independent schools uniting to take action on climate change and the environment.

"We commend Avon Old Farms School for taking this major solar step forward as part of their commitment to the Green Schools Alliance," said Ron French, President of the Solar Division at Alteris Renewables. "With this installation and Avon's other energy efficiency measures, Avon is inspiring students to lead us toward a more sustainable future."

"This installation is an excellent example of incorporating solar PV at an educational institution. In addition to offsetting the school's power usage, the solar array will help teach hundreds of young people about renewable energy technology and sustainability," said Norma Glover, Chair of the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund. "The installation, which is the largest of thirteen solar arrays installed at private schools in Connecticut, demonstrates that Avon Old Farms School is firmly committed to clean, renewable energy. As a resident of Avon, I am delighted to have such a wonderful environmental steward in my backyard."

About Avon Old Farms: Avon Old Farms School is a boarding & day school for 400 boys in grades 9-12 and post-graduates offering the best in traditional secondary education. Founded in 1927 by Theodate Pope Riddle, the magnificent campus is set upon 1,000 acres of rolling woodland and offers outstanding facilities, including a new student center and athletic field house as well as an NHL-quality ice arena. The Ordway Science and Technology Center was completed in 2002, and the Beatson Performing Arts Center opened in March of 2007. Avon is a fully-accredited college preparatory school and its graduates represent their school proudly at some of the finest colleges and universities in the nation and abroad.

About Alteris Renewables: Alteris Renewables is the largest design-build renewable energy company in the Northeast, with more than 2,250 completed installations across six states. Ranked as one of the top ten fastest growing energy companies in the Inc. 500, Alteris provides turn-key solar electric (photovoltaic or PV), solar thermal, and wind energy solutions for commercial, residential, education, government and institutional clients. The company has industry-leading expertise in engineering, design, project management, performance analysis, project financing and renewable energy credit programs.

About EOS Ventures, LLC: EOS Ventures is a renewable energy company focusing on financing and developing solar and wind projects throughout the northeast. By the end of 2009, EOS will have, in one year alone, participated in the installation of six MegaWatts of energy, both solar and wind, in the northeast, a leader in the renewable energy field.

About Connecticut Clean Energy Fund The Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) was created by the Connecticut General Assembly and is funded by the electric ratepayers. CCEF's mission is to promote, develop and invest in clean energy sources for the benefit of Connecticut's ratepayers in order to strengthen Connecticut's economy, protect community health, improve the environment, and promote a secure energy supply for the state. CCEF is administered by Connecticut Innovations, a quasi-public authority.

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Jo Lee
Green Machine PR
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Christine Walder
Avon Old Farms
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