Vice President Kevin Tesseo said they’re using their privately-owned plot of land in Brewer to install a solar farm.
MAINE, USA — As many people continue working to reduce their carbon footprint, some businesses are doing the same thing. Many are also looking into other options to reduce high energy costs, like Darling’s Auto Group.
Darling’s dealerships will soon be making the switch to solar power at some of its locations in the Bangor area. Kevin Tesseo, vice president of Darling’s, said this switch has been in the works for more than two years.
Tesseo said they determined that their plot of land in Brewer on Wiswell Road was the ideal location for a solar farm. Once complete, Tesseo said it would power all of their buildings in the Versant Power district.
“That includes the two stores in Ellsworth, the four buildings in Bangor, this building in Brewer, and our Green Point location in Brewer,” Tesseo said.
That means this solar farm would exclude the Darling’s locations in Augusta and Brunswick, which rely on the Central Maine Power supply.
Vaughan Woodruff, director of workforce development at Revision Energy, said the project consists of nearly 4,000 solar panels. Darling’s solar farm will offset roughly 8,500 tons of carbon per year. He said it would also cover 100% of the electrical costs for those buildings.
“This project is expected to offset somewhere north of $300,000 of electrical costs per year for them,” Woodruff said.
Darling’s is not the first auto group in Maine to switch to solar. Pratt Chevrolet in Calais is one of several other dealerships across the state doing so. Ian Pratt, the owner of Pratt Chevrolet, said they converted to solar energy several years ago, installing the panels on the roof of the building.
Since making the switch, Pratt said he saves about $36,000 per year.
Tesseo said this decision wasn’t as much about cost-efficiency for his business.
“We certainly see the evolution of electric vehicles and that type of thing, and we’re installing charging stations in most of our dealerships. And then it got us thinking about, you know, can we be more sustainable ourselves? And that’s how it began for us,” Tesseo said.
The solar farm project is expected to be completed by summer.