Solar, Sourcing Renewables - May 10, 2021
University of Notre Dame Boosts Sustainability with St. Joseph’s Solar Power
Clean solar energy is now flowing from the new 20-megawatt St. Joseph's Solar Power Farm, located eight miles from the University of Notre Dame. The solar project results from a partnership with Notre Dame, American Electric Power (AEP), and Indiana Michigan Power (I&M). Notre Dame commits to support 40% of the RECs from the renewable energy generated by the project, as part of its sustainability goals.
The solar array is built on 210 acres and contains 57,720 solar panels, about the same distance as 30 football fields. Construction on the site, which started in July 2020, was briefly delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Power started flowing on May 6 after a "flip-the-switch" gathering. St. Joseph's Solar Power Farm is the largest renewable energy project yet for the University.
"Notre Dame is pleased to collaborate with Indiana Michigan Power on this significant solar energy project. Our commitment to sustainability reflects our Catholic mission and values and recognizes the link between environmental sustainability and the University's future," said Rev. John I Jenkins, C.S.C, president of the University of Notre Dame, in a statement. "It's important to work within our local community to create projects like the St. Joseph Solar Farm to provide educational opportunities for our students and to have an impact on our environment and economy."
The solar farm's environmental impact – the same as avoiding more than 13,000 tons of C02 -- is the equivalent of more than 30 million miles driven (14,000 trips from South Bend, IN to Los Angeles, CA).