GridPoint, Inc., an established leader for smart energy solutions, announces it has been selected to design, engineer and install 15 solar arrays for Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD). The arrays, totaling 436 kW, will be distributed across the state at various TPWD state parks, fish hatcheries and other sites. Installation is scheduled to begin later this month with an estimated completion date of August 2011.
“TPWD is pleased to work with GridPoint as we strive to meet the key objectives for sustainable conservation outlined in the 2010 Land and Water Plan,” states Rich McMonagle, TPWD infrastructure division director. “GridPoint’s solar solution helps us to support conservation actions that mitigate anticipated climate change impacts to plants, fish and wildlife and encourage the development of renewable energy projects which do not adversely affect those communities.”
In 2010, TPWD updated the 2005 Land and Water Resources Conservation Plan with the goal of guiding the agency in conserving the state's natural and historic heritage and in providing public access to the outdoors. Later that year, TPWD was awarded a competitive federal stimulus grant for solar installations as part of the Distributed Renewable Energy Technology Program. TPWD is installing solar photovoltaic (PV) generation systems at its main headquarters in Austin and high-visibility state park, fish hatchery and wildlife management area locations throughout Texas, including:
State Parks: Lake Tawakoni State Park, Ray Roberts Lake State Park, Cooper Lake State Park, Cedar Hill State Park, Lake Arrowhead State Park, San Angelo State Park, Davis Mountain State Park, Choke Canyon State Park, Mustang Island State Park, Government Canyon State Park and McKinney Falls State Park
Fish hatcheries and WMAs: Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center, Possum Kingdom Fish Hatchery, A.E. Wood Fish Hatchery, and Kerr Wildlife Management Area
“Partnering with TPWD allows GridPoint to assist this visionary public department in its commitment to the environment,” said Jeff Ross, senior vice president of GridPoint. “The installation of solar arrays encourages science-based solutions for natural resource conservation across Texas and is a prime example for parks and wildlife organizations nationally.”
The solar energy systems will also feature an intelligent monitoring solution to record, and in some cases display for visitors, the current and historical energy production. This information allows TPWD to closely monitor system performance through a Web interface.