Media Relations

Press Release:

MEDIA CONTACT: Lisa Freed
561-297-3022, lfreed@fau.edu

FAU Fort Lauderdale Installs City’s First Large-Scale Solar Roof Project on Higher Education Complex Building

BOCA RATON, FL (February 18, 2009) – Florida Atlantic University’s School of Urban and Regional Planning in the College of Architecture, Urban and Public Affairs, Florida Governor Charlie Crist, FAU President Frank T. Brogan and community leaders unveiled downtown Fort Lauderdale’s first large-scale solar roof installation today on FAU’s Higher Education Complex (HEC) building, Fort Lauderdale campus.

“Florida’s universities are taking a leadership role in the state’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the use of renewable energy technologies,” said Governor Crist. “The research done on campuses like FAU not only prepares our future workforce, but it also fosters advances that will lead to more ‘green’ jobs.”

The Photovoltaic Solar Panel installation project, conducted by Advanced Roofing, Inc. and headed by Dr. Jaap Vos, associate professor and director of FAU’s School of Urban & Regional Planning, is funded by a generous private gift from an anonymous donor, as well funds from Florida Power & Light, the State of Florida Solar Energy System Incentives program and other state funding.  FAU is the first university in South Florida to implement the solar panel project initiative.

“This is an exciting time for Florida Atlantic University, as we continue to embark on our mission to promote sustainability,” said FAU President Frank T. Brogan. “The solar panel initiative reflects how FAU continues to chart new ground in this mission, serving as a role model in the implementation and success of alternative energy through educational outreach.”

The initiative covers the installation of 240 photovoltaic panels, as well as the future installation of a flat panel display and a “real time” monitoring system in the building to allow users to see the energy produced. The panel is designed to produce 50,000 watts of energy.

Other benefits that the university and environment will reap from the project annually are as follows:

·          Reducing between 20 and 25 percent of current energy demand

·          Preventing 70,000 pounds of carbon dioxide to be emitted into the atmosphere

·          Saving 4,000 gallons of oil

·          Preserving more than 4,200 trees

·          Providing a pilot for other buildings in the downtown Fort Lauderdale area

A portion of the budget savings from the HEC building utility bills will be used to fund the Sun Fund Scholarship for one graduate student each year in the School of Urban and Regional Planning. This is believed to be the first scholarship of its kind in the nation to be completely paid for by the sun.

For more information, contact Daniel Morris at 954-762-5661 or dmorri47@fau.edu.

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