High school opens Kansas’ largest private solar power system

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In this Feb. 26, 2015 photo, solar panels that are part of the Wright-Hennepin Cooperative Electric Association’s community gardens are shown in Rockford, Minn. Community solar gardens are a new concept in renewable energy, allowing customers who cannot put up solar panels to buy into the green energy boom anyway. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

The largest privately-owned solar power system in Kansas is operational at a Wichita-area high school.

Maize High School on Tuesday switched on a system with 720 solar panels that will generate enough energy in one day to power the school for a month.

Physics and chemistry teacher Stan Bergkamp says the 240 kilowatt system is 400 feet long and 75 feet wide. It sits next to the high school.

The Wichita Eagle reports Bergkamp said he promoted the project in response to the threat of climate change.

He estimates once the system is paid for, it will save the school $3,200 a month and reduce annual carbon emissions by 240 tons.

ICM, Inc. bought the $400,000 system and will lease it to Maize High School for six years.

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