Goodwill Central Texas and Meridian Solar partner to install two solar electric systems for the nonprofit. The 520 kW of solar electricity will bring savings to the nonprofit and help them further their mission.
Nonprofits stand to benefit from solar even more than most businesses. With their small operating margins, they can use the savings from solar to focus resources on their programs instead of on operating costs. And that helps not only the nonprofit but also the community the nonprofit serves.
But it can be harder for nonprofits to go solar. Financing a solar project is generally not in their budget. While some rely on donations to go solar, now we’re seeing more nonprofits joining the Solar Revolution in the same way that so many homeowners have: with solar leases.
That’s what Goodwill Central Texas is doing. With the help of solar provider Meridian Solar, Goodwill is celebrating two new solar arrays in Austin, Texas. Meridian Solar developed and installed 520 kW of solar electricity for the nonprofit: a 260 kW system at the Goodwill Resource Center and a 260 kW system at the Goodwill Community Center. The two systems combined use 2,132 solar panels.
Because the solar systems are financed with a lease, they will bring Goodwill immediate savings. The nonprofit and the community it serves will also enjoy long-term benefits. “Goodwill will save money on electricity for several decades to come, and the Austin community will also stand to benefit from the clean solar energy produced by Goodwill’s systems,” commented Mark Begert, Executive Vice President and Director of Meridian Solar, in a press release. And of course, the savings to Goodwill can translate into more service for their community.
Over the lifetime of the systems, they will prevent 920,000 pounds of CO2 from being emitted into the atmosphere annually, equivalent to planting 800 acres of trees each year.
“Choosing to go solar was an easy decision for Goodwill, as it aligns with Goodwill’s commitment to sustainable practices,” noted Allen Whitley, Senior Director of Environmental Business Services for Goodwill. “We diverted nearly 28 million pounds of material from landfills in 2013, contributing to the creation of jobs and generating revenue for our mission. Goodwill Central Texas also supports multiple recycling events in the community, so going solar was the natural next step in our goal to be innovators in environmentalism.”
“Partnering with Goodwill to develop 520 kW of solar energy in Austin was an exciting and rewarding experience for Meridian Solar,” noted Andrew McCalla, Meridian’s Founder and President. “We have tremendous respect for Goodwill’s mission, and it has been inspiring to work with their team whose clarity of purpose and focus made for a relatively smooth process.”