HARRISBURG, PA – August 6, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Hanger today toured a significant commercial solar electricity project in Harrisburg built with assistance from the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The 50.5 kilowatt solar photovoltaic system on the roof of the new Campus Square building at North Third and Reily streets will prevent nearly 61,000 lbs of carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen from entering the atmosphere each year.
“What we are witnessing here today is not only a statewide commitment to taking necessary strides towards developing renewable and sustainable energy systems, but we also are fueling much-needed community revitalization, economic development and local job creation,” Hanger said.
The Campus Square project created about 200 temporary jobs, at least 10 of which were directly involved in the solar installation.
Joining Secretary Hanger for the rooftop tour were U. S. Congressman Tim Holden and Harrisburg Area Community College President Edna V. Baehre.
The installation covers 1,110 square feet and incorporates 74 separate panels linked together to produce enough electricity for the common and public areas of the building.
Solar photovoltaic systems use the heat generated by the sun to agitate electrons on the surface of the collector. The heat and friction generated by the process creates a static charge that is captured and turned into electrical charges that are then stored or used directly through transformers and other equipment.
The solar installation is just one of the alternative energy features of the Campus Square building. The complex is heated and cooled by one of the region’s most advanced geothermal systems as, coming from 48 wells dug to a depth of 400 feet. The building is also being built to LEED Silver status, one of the highest ratings for energy efficiency and conservation in new construction.
When finished, the Campus Square complex will house the innovative new Green Center of Pennsylvania. In conjunction with HACC, the Green Center will become a hub for education, training and information related to the application of green technologies and practices in the region.
At the new center, HACC will conduct both credit and workforce training programs for solar, wind, geothermal, hydro and conservation workers. The initial courses, to be conducted in the recently renovated HACC Midtown II Building, will begin in the fall with an estimated 300 students enrolled. The courses will be moved to the Green Center when the Campus Square building is completed.
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