BUFFALO, N.Y. – Solar power plants are often located
behind fences, on rooftops or in hard-to-reach places.
The University at Buffalo’s Solar Strand, believed to be
the nation’s most publicly accessible photovoltaic array, is
an exception. On Monday, April 22, as the world observes Earth Day,
UB and the Western New York Environmental Alliance will introduce
the public to the one-of-a-kind facility with a 90-minute event
that will highlight how environmental initiatives are redefining
our economy and improving our quality of life.
“The Solar Strand has attracted a great deal of attention
as a renewable energy landscape that produces enough clean energy
to power hundreds of student apartments. More than that, it’s
a focal point for sustainable education and research,” UB
President Satish K. Tripathi said. “This is a valuable
resource for the university as well as the public, who are able to
learn, teach and discover in this remarkable facility.”
The event will feature short speeches from people working to
create a more sustainable future in Western New York and beyond.
Among them: Samina Raja, UB associate professor of urban and
regional planning; Jill Jedlicka, executive director of the Buffalo
Niagara Riverkeeper; Kenneth Shockley, UB associate professor of
philosophy; Justin Booth, executive director of GObike Buffalo; and
Aaron Bartley, executive director and co-founder of PUSH
Robert E. Knoer, an attorney who serves as the environmental
alliance’s chairman, noted that it represents more than 100
organizations and support groups. He said the event “will be
an opportunity for them to build on existing connections with UB
and to tap into the human energy that the university’s
The event will include tours of the Solar Strand, music and an
Earth Day awards ceremony presented by Ecology and Environment
Note: While there is no cost, attendees are asked to
register at http://www.buffalo.edu/sustainability/engagement/earth-week.html.
When: 5-6:30 p.m. Monday, April 22.
Where: Solar Strand, UB North Campus. Parking is
available at the Center for Tomorrow (building No. 53 on this map:
lot near the Flint Road entrance.
Why: From helping investigate toxic chemicals in the Love
Canal neighborhood of Niagara Falls in the 1970s to committing to
be climate neutral by 2030, UB has a long history in environmental
leadership. The event is another example of its commitment to
educate, inspire and enable people both on and off campus to create
a more sustainable world. For more information, visit www.buffalo.edu/sustainability/html.
About the Solar Strand: Designed by celebrated landscape
artist Walter Hood, the Solar Strand contains 3,200 solar panels
laid out in the pattern of a DNA fingerprint. Since UB flipped the
switch a year ago, it has generated more than 882,556 kilowatts of
clean, renewable electricity. That equates to nearly 72,000 gallons
of gasoline saved or the abatement of 633 tons of carbon dioxide.
Note: These figures are as of April 19 and subject to change. For
more information, visit: www.buffalo.edu/sustainability/solar-strand.html.