Published June 19, 2014
About 15 children learned about renewable energy, art and sustainability at the University at Buffalo’s Solar Strand yesterday.
The children, from the UB’s Child Care Center, took part in activities, such as a scavenger hunt and baking cookies in a solar oven.
A partnership with the New York Power Authority, the Solar Strand is a 3,200-panel photovoltaic array at the Flint Road entrance to UB’s North Campus. At 750 kilowatts, it generates enough clean, renewable electricity to power hundreds of student apartments.
Since UB flipped the switch in April, the array has generated 325,000 kilowatt hours of electricity. That’s enough power to match the annual demand of 40 households. It also equals saving hundreds of tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.
As the children’s presence suggests, the array is also an outdoor classroom. UB expects to hold additional classes there after construction crews put final touches on the site, such as laying concrete slabs and other user-friendly features.
The Solar Strand demonstrates UB's commitment to sustainability, climate neutrality, and environmental stewardship under the UB 2020 strategic plan and Building UB: The Comprehensive Physical Plan. This plan guides development of facilities to support the growth of research in the university's strategic strengths and to improve the student experience in classrooms, labs, libraries, dining halls, dormitories and recreational facilities and will make UB campuses great places that people can truly enjoy and appreciate.