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US (AR): SunFed commences solar power installation

Though Florida may be the Sunshine State, Arizona-based SunFed is taking full advantage of its states’ plentiful natural resource. The company has begun work on one of the largest commercial installations of solar power in southern Arizona. The nearly half megawatt solar system will be mounted on the roof of their 46,000 sq. ft. refrigerated produce distribution facility.

The solar system will nearly offset all of the facility’s electrical consumption as well as drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and further reduce the company’s carbon footprint. “SunFed has a deep commitment to the environment and a long history of taking strides to operate in the most sustainable way possible. It started over ten years ago with our use of MA/MH packaging to eliminate waste in the supply chain. This is another critical step down the path of supplying the best fruits and vegetables in an environmentally-conscientious manner,” said Matt Mandel, VP of Sales & Marketing at SunFed.

The solar array is expected to produce over 620,000 kilowatt hours annually, eliminating nearly 336 metric tons of carbon-equivalent emissions from the atmosphere. This equates to removing the carbon dioxide emissions of approximately 70 vehicles a year.

“SunFed has a few benefits that will help yield better-than-average results with this installation. Our building is very well positioned to be able to optimize the tilt angle of the panels leading to larger periods of peak solar harvesting. We also have the benefit of being at elevation in a relatively low-humidity environment which will also result in very high solar gain, furthering the benefits to ourselves and the environment,” said Danny Mandel, president and CEO.

Smart Solar Solutions will provide the engineering, installation, and a monitoring system that produces live data showing how much electricity the solar electric system generates.

There will be a total of 1744 solar modules that will be mounted on the SunFed’s roof. “This is an interesting design in that to be able to install solar modules on the north facing roof area we needed to design a custom reverse tilt stadium solution to keep the modules tilted south” said Mandel.

“By making an investment in clean, reliable solar energy SunFed is not only doing their part to reduce dependence on fossil fuels but also has significantly reduced one of their largest operating costs, their energy bill,” said Smart Solar Solutions President and CEO, Nick Davison.

The solar project is scheduled to be concluded in early 2013. The future will continue to look bright as SunFed will begin working on a second solar system for its secondary distribution center upon completion of the first phase of the project. According to Mandel, with the addition of the second facility, SunFed hopes to bring its total solar energy production to over 1,000,000 kilowatt hours per year.

For more information:
Matt Mandel
Tel: +1 520 761-6813
Mob: +1 520 839-9670

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