How Successful Are The Depot’s Solar Panels?
The panels have saved the facility money and reduced its environmental impact.
The Depot Coffee House has been monitoring the energy generated by its solar panels since workers installed the panels in June 2011. On Tuesday, the youth-focused facility announced the results it’s seen since that installation
An $85,000 Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Solar Energy Legacy Grant paid for the panels as part of a project intended to be both practical and educational.
The Depot’s totals are listed below, but residents don’t have to wait for the facility to release subsequent information. A flat screen monitor inside The Depot lets people know how much electricity the sun is generating. And thanks to the power of the Internet, anyone can monitor that data straight from a home computer—along with details from the coffee shop’s weather station.
The graphic above is a live feed straight from the site that collects all the information. Click through the different tabs to see power generation over time, weather trends, The Depot’s electricity usage and much more. There’s even a schematic that shows how the solar power system works.
(Click here to see the data in its own browser page.)
Depot Solar Panel Totals
Depot electricity bill:
- Before the solar panels: $6,400
- After the solar panels: $4,200
- In the past year: 11,535 kWh
- Since the June 2011 installation: 18,998 kWh
One year of electrical generation is equivalent to:
- Saving 10 tons of carbon dioxide
- Saving 1,119 gallons of gas
- Planting 249 trees