Demand Management, Distributed Generation, Industrial, Solar, Sourcing Renewables  -  August 10, 2016

GM installs 850 kW solar array at Corvette site

One of the most iconic American cars just got a little greener. 

General Motors has installed an 850 kW solar array at its Bowling Green Assembly plant in Kentucky, where the company manufactures the Chevrolet Corvette. The PV installation is expected to generate 1,200,000 kW of electricity in its first year of operation, enough to produce about 850 Corvette, according to a news release from Empower Energies, who GM partnered with for the project. 

"Projects like this solar array at our Bowling Green plant help send a message that renewable energy is a sustainable and affordable choice for manufacturing," Rob Threlkeld, GM global manager of renewable energy said in a statement. "As the automotive industry leader of solar energy use in the United States, we want to demonstrate the benefits of solar use, like reducing our impact on the environment and providing value to our customers and investors."

Empower Energies served as the general contractor for the project, working alongside a number of other companies who have completed contracted projects at other local GM facilities including J. Ranck Electric of Mt. Pleasant, Mich., which installed the racking system and solar panels. PayneCrest Electric, Inc., of St. Louis, Mo., completed the wiring, testing and commissioning of the system, while civil work was handled by The Boldt Company of Appleton, Wisc. 

Editor's note: Threlkeld is a Smart Energy Decisions advisory board member. 

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