Kailua-Kona, HI— Microalgae supplement maker Cyanotech has unveiled a 2,280 panel solar array on its microalgae farm.The installation was celebrated with local business and community leaders during a blessing ceremony led by Hawaiian culture expert and founder of the Na Wai Iwi Ola Foundation Kumu Keala Ching.
Installed by Neighborhood Power Company, this array will cover 1.3 acres of the 90-acre farm, and produce 1,147,000 kilowatt hours of electricity each year. This amount of energy is enough to power the entire farm’s operations during daylight hours, and will reduce energy costs for Cyanotech by 10%. Power costs in Hawaii are among the most expensive in the country, and in addition to reducing costs, the array will reduce Cyanotech’s greenhouse emissions by 791 metric tons of carbon dioxide, the equivalent of the annual greenhouse gas emissions of 147 passenger vehicles.
“Environmental stewardship is a key tenet of Cyanotech’s corporate mission,” said Gerry Cysewski, PhD and Cyanotech’s chief science officer, executive vice president and co-founder. He also remarked that the fact that this array will reduce greenhouse emissions as well as power costs makes the move “a win-win for the environment and our bottom line.” To offset the environmental impact of the project, Neighborhood Power planted 14,000 trees through nonprofit Trees for the Future.
Published in WholeFoods Magazine, January 2015 (online 12/1/2014)