Utah lumber company installs solar array on roof, reduces energy costs by 75 percent
Mark Wetzel, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah company has turned its unused roof space into a solar farm, and it’s reducing its energy cost and carbon footprint at the same time.
"When you look at your energy costs and they're so high, you wonder how you can move them the other way," said Jeff Burton, co-owner of Burton Lumber, a building material supply company.
Burton said the company was paying anywhere from $150,000 to $200,000 a year in energy costs at its Salt Lake City facility.
"This project is 642 kilowatts. It's about 2,700 solar panels," said Brok Thayn, energy department manager with Hunt Electric.
For more than 18 months, Hunt Electric designed and built the state's largest privately owned, roof-mounted solar array. It installed 2,676 solar modules on the 193,484-square-foot roof.
It will cost Burton Lumber $2 million, but the company expects to pay it off within the next four years.
"This system is 4.4 acres and offsets 75 percent of Burton Lumber's power bill," Thayn said.
The only problem the company has run into so far is snow. Employees have to clear the panels before they'll begin producing energy again.
"When a lumber yard can actually give back to the environment, because we are kind of known as the guys cutting trees down, when we can give back, that makes sense," Burton said.
- Dispatchers answer man's repeated 911 calls...
- Woman killed in Sandy shooting
- Grading Utah schools, 2014: Top 20 highest...
- Carbon County deputy saves father, son from...
- Sugar House man intends to sue police, city...
- Visiting minister urges unity among Christians
- Audit: Drinking water connection requirements...
- Gov. Herbert nominates 3rd District Judge...
- Majority of Utahns oppose moving state... 51
- Prison relocation sites down to four as... 50
- Obama signature all that's left in... 39
- End gun violence, say faith leaders on... 33
- Sugar House man intends to sue police,... 25
- Popular Utah County water recreation... 21
- Audit: Utah still relies heavily on... 16
- Utahns favor Count My Vote and SB54,... 15