“Even though the project increases the school’s electricity costs at first, it will be an economic benefit over time,” says CRMS Finance Director Joe White. “Students understand that making a financial sacrifice now for a benefit that won’t be seen for 20 years, if it’s the right thing to do, it makes sense.”
Like Aspen Skiing Company, CRMS is also treating the solar array as a building block. Since the array’s installation, the school has expanded the facilities that are tied to its meter, with an eye toward expanding its agricultural program to run pumps off the array, says White.
“We like the idea of incorporating renewable energy, land stewardship, and local ag production in a real-world project students can get involved in and see how they interrelate,” says White. “When you can hit a bunch of really neat things like that with one project, it’s fun.”