A new array of solar panels mounted atop the Coors Events Center and Basketball/Volleyball Practice Facility is the second largest array on campus. It will provide clean power for more than 20 percent of the event center’s needs, reducing carbon emissions by 714,000 pounds per year. The solar array is part of the university’s ongoing effort to reduce campus’s carbon footprint and guard against energy price inflation.
The Office of Sustainability financed, designed, and installed the 290-kilowatt system, in collaboration with the Department of Athletics. Covering approximately 40,000 square feet, it is the largest roof-mounted solar array in the city of Boulder and produces enough energy to power 42 average homes. The cost to the university under the purchase agreement is $.04 per kilowatt hour. The payback for the university will occur in just four years once the university buys the system after seven years at a fraction of the initial cost, at which point Coors will benefit from 420,000 kilowatt hours per year of free energy and save the university $84,000 per year in combined energy and rebates.