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Published on November 26th, 2009 | by Susan Kraemer


First Carbon-Neutral "Army Brats" in USA to Grow up Solar Powered by Tucson Sunshine

November 26th, 2009 by  

Davis-Monthan Air Force Base outside Tucson is putting 6 megawatts of solar on their new Soaring Heights Communities, a groundbreaking private housing development that will get 75% of its power from the Tucson sun, famous for shining 350 days a year.

The largest solar community in the US; with 81,000 solar panels about evenly split between ground-mount and roof mount – could be ready for military families to move-in as early as December.


Kids growing up on the base will be pretty much carbon neutral, unlike most American kids.

The 6 MW installation is so large that it will increase Arizona’s supply of solar power by about 15%, according to California-based SolarCity, which is supplying the panels.

“By choosing to live in this solar community, airmen and their families can feel good about their contributions toward gaining energy independence for our nation,” said Col. Charles Hunter, commander of the base’s 355th Mission Support Group, which oversees the project.

“The [Defense Department] is the largest consumer of energy in the federal government, and we need to show the American people we’re addressing that fact in environmentally responsible ways.”

Soaring Heights Communities is a partnership of Actus Lend Lease, a Tennessee company that develops and manages privatized housing for the military; SolarCity, supplying the solar installation; the local utility; Tucson Electric Power, and National Bank of Arizona, which financed the project and will own more than half of the system.

Military families here will have one more reason to feel patriotic. They are leading the way to our clean energy future.

Image: Solar City

Source: Air Force Times 


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About the Author

writes at CleanTechnica, CSP-Today and Renewable Energy World.  She has also been published at Wind Energy Update, Solar Plaza, Earthtechling PV-Insider , and GreenProphet, Ecoseed, NRDC OnEarth, MatterNetwork, Celsius, EnergyNow, and Scientific American. As a former serial entrepreneur in product design, Susan brings an innovator's perspective on inventing a carbon-constrained civilization: If necessity is the mother of invention, solving climate change is the mother of all necessities! As a lover of history and sci-fi, she enjoys chronicling the strange future we are creating in these interesting times.    Follow Susan on Twitter @dotcommodity.

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