IGS Solar and Catholic Energies will build the largest solar ground array and pollinator field project approved for construction to-date in the District of Columbia for the benefit of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington (CCADW).
In response to Pope Francis’s call to combat climate change and to serve as good stewards of the environment, CCADW will host a 2-MW ground-mount solar system comprising more than 5,000 panels. The system will produce more than 2.7 million kWh per year, accounting for nearly 100% of the current power requirements for CCADW’s real estate portfolio across the city. The project also supports the mission of the Catholic Climate Covenant (CCC), which was formed in 2006 to address growing ecological awareness and the need to implement Catholic social teaching on ecology.
IGS will take ownership of and sell the RECs created from this project.
This solar project was created, developed and managed by Catholic Energies, a service of the CCC, which provides turnkey project development services and expertise, as well as access to financial resources at no cost to Catholic organizations nationwide, wishing to install solar power and other energy-efficiency equipment.
“We are proud to have this opportunity to take up Pope Francis’s call to action to protect our environment,” said Monsignor John Enzler, president and CEO of CCADW. “Climate change is an urgent issue, and we are pleased that this project supports DC’s Sustainable DC 2.0 initiative by reducing the consumption of fossil fuels and generating solar power. We look forward to working with IGS Solar, Solar Energy Services Inc. and Catholic Energies on this exciting development.”
IGS Solar and its design and construction partner Solar Energy Services will build and operate the solar power system on approximately five acres of a site in Northeast Washington DC, which houses the Gift of Peace Home operated by the Missionaries of Charity.
“All of us should be looking at ways to consume energy more responsibly and to protect the environment,” said Patrick Smith, VP at IGS Solar. “We’re proud to partner with Catholic Charities ADW on this critical project to advance energy sustainability and promote responsible energy use.”
In addition, the project will include a 5-acre meadow to support pollinator populations, such as bees and butterflies. About 650,000 pollinator and nectar-bearing flowering plants will be at the base of the solar array. By reinvigorating pollinator habitats through projects such as this, researchers hope to curb the decline of vital insect species and help bolster the agricultural industry.
“Making productive use of the land under and around ground-mounted solar farms is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to create new acres of habitat for the butterflies, birds and nature that gives us a sense of peace,” said Rob Davis, director for the Center for Pollinators in Energy. “With plans for a beautiful new flowering solar park, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington are helping to grow this important national trend of pollinator-friendly solar.”
News item from IGS Solar