Atlanta, April 27, 2011 – The Atlanta Community Food Bank (ACFB) and Radiance Solar have announced the completion of a state-of-the-art photovoltaic solar array at the Food Bank’s midtown headquarters. The ACFB has distributed food and grocery products to partner nonprofits throughout metro Atlanta and North Georgia for nearly 32 years, and is now poised to be an important partner in the fight against rising energy costs.
The Food Bank’s solar system, Powered by Suniva™, is one of the largest roof-mounted PV arrays in the state of Georgia. The array consists of over 174 high-powered solar panels manufactured by Norcross-based Suniva. The 42kW solar array is expected to produce 58,000 kWh every year, all of which will be fed back into Georgia Power’s electric-grid as a part of their Green Energy Buyback Program. The ACFB will be paid a premium for up to 25KWh of the clean energy they feed into the grid, turning the sun’s free and abundant energy into money that can be used to fight hunger.
“Suniva is delighted to collaborate with local partners in the commissioning of another significant solar installation which utilizes our homegrown Georgia technology,” said Bryan Ashley, chief marketing officer of Suniva, Inc. “Our goal at Suniva is to make solar sensible to enable installations like the one at the Atlanta Community Food Bank. With each new installation, we help lead Georgia towards a more sustainable future.”
Atlanta-based Radiance Solar was able to install the large solar array at no cost to the Food Bank by winning a competitive renewable energy grant from the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA). “The GEFA grant has allowed us to continue transforming our operations with the help of solar energy,” says Bill Bolling, ACFB Founder and Executive Director. The solar array compliments
our LEED building status and furthers our mission to be a leader in innovative and sustainable business practices in the fight against hunger.” The Food Bank’s array is the second to be completed as part of the Georgia Non-Profit Solar Project, an initiative funded by the GEFA grant, set to deliver almost $1 million in solar energy infrastructure to Georgia non-profit organizations.
“We are proud to have such fantastic partners in GEFA and the Atlanta Community Food Bank,” says Radiance Solar CEO, James Marlow, “…ultimately, solar energy is about securing a clean and sustainable future for Georgia communities, and that’s a perfect fit for the Food Bank and all of our partners in the Georgia Non-Profit Solar Project.”
About Atlanta Community Food Bank:
The Atlanta Community Food Bank (ACFB) began operating in 1979 in a small space at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, and now distributes over 25 million pounds of food and grocery products each year from a 129,600 square-foot facility in N.W. Atlanta. This product is utilized by more than 700 partner nonprofits that provide food assistance to families and individuals in 38 counties in metro Atlanta and North Georgia. ACFB leads seven distinct projects that reinforce its mission to fight hunger by engaging, educating and empowering our community: Atlanta Prosperity Campaign, Atlanta’s Table, Community Gardens, Hunger 101, Hunger Walk/Run, Kids In Need and Product Rescue Center.
The Atlanta Community Food Bank is a member of Feeding America, the national network of more than 200 food banks. For more information on the Food Bank, visit www.ACFB.org, and for more information on Feeding America visit www.feedingamerica.org.
- Our 42KW system is projected to offset about 5% of our current energy consumption.
- Electricity offsets in the first month (March) of use were $344
- Long term plans over the next 10 years include steadily expanding our solar capacity to take advantage of projected future improvements in solar efficiency at even more reduced installation costs.
- This solar installation continues the Food Bank’s history of continually expanding its commitment to the broad, “green” sustainability cause.
- Last year ACFB became an official “carbon neutral” work place …and this solar capacity will further reduce our need to make modest “offset contributions” to remain carbon neutral
- Other sustainability improvements that are about to start include contracting with Greenco to begin diverting compostable materials from our general trash – further reducing waste going to regional landfills