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Solar Farm Earns “Best Solar Project” of the Year Honors

solar farmEmmitsburg, Maryland — A 100-acre, 220,000-panel solar farm located on the Mount St. Mary’s University campus has earned 2012 “Best Solar Project” honors by Solar Power Generation USA.

Constellation Energy financed, owns and operates the approximately $50 million solar facility on behalf of its customer, the state of Maryland. The 16.1-megawatt (DC) grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) solar installation came online last summer as part of the State of Maryland’s Generating Clean Horizons initiative.

The award recognized the project’s completion — at no up front cost to the state of Maryland. Coupled with a 1.6-megawatt system supplying power directly to the university, the organization said: “(the project) demonstrates the potential of public-private partnerships in furthering renewable energy and sustainability goals.”

The state’s Department of General Services, and the University System of Maryland, purchase electricity generated by the solar farm, under a 20-year agreement with Constellation.

The grid-connected system is producing more than 20 million kilowatt hours of emissions-free electricity per year. Generating the same amount of electricity using nonrenewable sources would result in the release of 17,981 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, according to U.S. EPA data.

“This recognition for Constellation Energy places our campus at the forefront in championing responsible land use and promoting renewable energy resources,” said Thomas H. Powell, president of Mount St. Mary’s University. “Our commitment to being good stewards of the environment is steadfast, and the solar farm presents an exciting learning and teaching opportunity for our students and for the local community.”

For more information on the Mount’s sustainability efforts please see our sustainability webpage.

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