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Refuge harnesses solar power for island

By Staff | Apr 17, 2019
PHOTO PROVIDED
PHOTO PROVIDED
PHOTO PROVIDED
PHOTO PROVIDED

Work has been completed on installing and connecting solar panels on the roof of the Visitor & Education Center at the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, the final phase of the refuge’s solar installation. The new solar kiosk shows information from the solar panels on the maintenance building. Visitors can interact with the kiosk to see how much energy is being generated and what the total energy can be equated to, in terms of tons of CO2 emissions avoided, smartphones charged, electric cars charged, gallons of gasoline offset and such. They can see how much energy is produced hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, yearly and in total – since the panels have been operating. The “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge has plans to create interactive solar components and exhibits inside and outside the center as part of the project, which was made possible by the 2015 San-Cap Solar Connect program and donations from Fred and Alice Stanback. San-Cap Solar Connect has brought affordable solar conversion to island residents and businesses through cooperative buying.