Photo taken from website of Swinerton Renewable Energy of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway solar farm.
The Solar Energy Industries Association recently released a report showing that professional sports teams across the U.S. are starting to join the movement in going solar.
Let’s go, solar!
According to the report, 37 professional sports facilities in the country are producing and operating on more than 46 megawatts of power from solar utilities. Almost 34 of those megawatts came from solar installations put in place in the last five years alone. That accounts for nearly 75% of the solar capacity currently being harnessed by all U.S. professional sport complexes, according to the SEIA.
The national solar industry trade-association also recorded that one-third of NFL stadiums use solar power and the MLB and NBA are catching up to them in this statistic.
Need for a speedy deployment of solar
The famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway is now home to “the largest solar power setup for a sporting facility in the world,” according to the Columbus Business News site. They said that the solar farm currently houses 39,312 solar modules and is generating over 9 megawatts of energy. They have accrued so much excess power, the article reported that the Indianapolis Power & Light Co. is trying to receive permission from the state of Indiana to sell some of this energy to Ohio residents in the form of solar renewable energy credits (SREC).
Not only would this benefit the Indiana-based utility, it would also help Ohio energy-users in reaching their state’s standard set into law in 2008, which mandates 25 percent of energy must come from alternative sources by 2025. Half of this requirement must come from clean energy sources.
What does this mean for the solar sector? A bigger fanbase
The adoption and promotion, though it may be unintentional, of utilizing solar energy is propitious news for the industry at large.
Professional sports in the U.S. are one of the most highly viewed affairs on television and the culture surrounding them generates billions in profits every year. Teams and even players themselves can have an influence on public opinion here in the U.S., and thus the perception that they are jumping on the solar bandwagon may encourage other industries, businesses or individuals to consider it.
At the very least, it spreads awareness of the wide-reaching benefits that comes with going solar.
Want to see solar projects here in the DC–MD–VA area? Here are some our residential and non-residential faves.