Mayor Kicks off Earth Week with Solar Event

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Mayor Kicks off Earth Week with Solar Event

Posted: 04/19/2010
To help kick-off Earth Week in Knoxville, Mayor Bill Haslam visited the site of the newest and largest solar installation in the City and joined the owner of Tillery Self-Storage and the founder of Sustainable Future of Knoxville, the system installer, in "flippin' the switch" to solar power generation for the self-storage company.

Tillery Self-Storage, located at 115 Tillery Drive in the City, is the site of Knoxville's largest commercial solar installation to date. At Tillery, roof mounting was not structurally feasible so a pole-mounted system was designed by Sustainable Future and consists of 7 solar arrays with 18 panels each. PV Systems can be ground mounted, roof mounted, or pole mounted.

Sustainable Future installed a 22.05 kW solar photo voltaic grid-tied system at the site which allows Tillery to prevent an estimated 19.8 metric tons of CO2 being released into the atmosphere each year. The estimated electrical output for the system is 27,562 kWH (Kilowatt Hours) of electricity per year. 
Mayor Haslam, in proclaiming Earth Week while at the site, praised Tillery for their foresight in taking this step to go green and for making a wise investment in clean energy. "We're very excited about this because it shows that solar is something business owners and individuals in Knoxville see as a viable alternative to coal and fossil-fuel generated electricity," Mayor Bill Haslam said. "This is the largest solar array in the city and I appreciate that Ray has stepped up and been a leader in the community." 

"We were really pleased to assist owner, Ray Lahti, in the procurement of 70% of his system's cost through available federal and state grants," said David Bolt, founder of Sustainable Future. "This, along with the TVA Generation Partners Program makes it possible for them to have a return on their investment of between 5-7 years. Besides helping the environment, it's a great business decision for Tillery." 
Sustainable Future was founded in 2005 by David Bolt and to date has created 15 green jobs. They are located at 201 Ogle Street in south Knoxville. Combining energy evaluations with solar technology services, the company's goals are to educate and provide the public ways to reduce their energy use, promote the production of power from solar systems, and become a leader in utilizing new technologies for the public's benefit.