Wilmington ranked top city in the U.S for solar energy

 (Nichelle Polston/WHYY)

(Nichelle Polston/WHYY)

Less than five years ago, Delaware Technical Community College developed a Sustainable Energy Management Plan to reduce its energy use by 20 percent by the year 2020.

 Today, a new 230-killowatt solar carport at Delaware Technical Community College serves as an example of energy efficient investments necessary to move not only the college but Delaware forward with clean renewable energy.

“These Panels college-wide are expected to produce about six percent of the college’s total energy needs and at the same time serve as learning tools for our college energy management programs,” said Delaware Tech Exec. Vice President Dr. Mark Brainard.

On Friday, Brainard joined Environment America Advocate Adam Garber to announce Wilmington’s ranking as one of the top cities in the U.S. for solar energy.

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According to the report, “Shining Cities – At the Forefront of America’s Solar Energy Revolution”, released by Environment America Research & Policy Center, Wilmington is ranked 3rd among cities nationwide for solar capacity per capita in 2013.

“The progress we made is a great start and just the beginning and something cities not only across Delaware but in our neighboring states like Pennsylvania and Maryland and across the whole country should really take notice of and lead the charge with Wilmington,” said Garber.

The report also shows the state’s commitment to green energy projects up and down the state as well.

“Delaware’s commitment to solar energy is paying dividends in terms of cleaner energy, lower costs, and new jobs for Delawareans. Innovative state policies have supported the deployment of more than 1,600 systems,” said Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Sec. Colin O’Mara.

Over the past few years, Wilmington’s capacity has increased significantly from 2008 to 2013. In fact, nearly 200 solar energy systems have been installed on buildings across the state including schools, businesses and government operations.

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