Park Headquarters Complex Using Solar Energy
Contact: John A. Dell’Osso, 415-464-5135
This week the Park Headquarters complex at Point Reyes National Seashore will start using solar energy to reduce its energy costs. The new solar photovoltaic system will deliver about 5.4 kilowatts per hour in power to run the park’s administrative offices. In comparison, an average house uses approximately 2.0 kilowatts per hour. This new system, installed by SolarFirst of San Rafael, is located on the roof of the administrative complex. Federal grant funds and technical assistance to install the system were provided by Bonneville Power Administration.
Over the last few years, compact solar generating power systems have been installed at various locations throughout the National Seashore. New systems have been installed at the Clem Miller Environmental Education Center, Pacific Coast Learning Center, the Bear Valley Visitor Center and the historic RCA Communication site. The five new systems are now generating energy to reduce the park’s outside energy needs, reduce air pollution and contribute to solutions to eliminate future energy crisis.
With these five solar systems in place, the park hopes to save $8,000 - $10,000 annually in electric costs. Overall, the park generates over 18 kilowatts in power with the various systems now in place.
Point Reyes National Seashore has been selected as a Center for Environmental Innovation. These centers are defined as park areas where research, development, visitor education and appreciation of sustainable practices occur. Out of 385 national park units across the country, 20 were selected by the NPS Headquarters in Washington D.C. to showcase sustainable technologies. With this designation, the park will be developing additional sustainable practices to share with the visiting public. Currently, the National Seashore serves approximately 2.5 million visitors annually.