American schools turning to solar

Friday, October 7, 2011 @ 08:10 AM
posted by rene5432

Universities across the U.S. have invested heavily in renewable electricity research, but a new database shows that the country's higher education system has also taken a growing interest in solar installations, according to CleanTechnica.

The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education created the Campus Solar Photovoltaic Installations database with the intent of tracking investment in solar electricity among American universities.

What it found was that schools have made a massive push toward green energy production, reaching as much as 137 megawatts of solar installations, more than five percent of the country's 2.7 gigawatts.

In the last three years, universities have increased their solar electricity capacity more than 450 percent, with a 61 percent increase just in the last year. In 2010, the report notes that U.S. campuses added 52 megawatts of solar installations, more than every state except for Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, New Jersey and California, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association's annual report.

PV-Magazine reports that the University of California – Davis has planned to use solar panels to create the country's largest zero net energy development.

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