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Zoar Outdoor Goes Solar

By Blair Winans

Charlemont, MA – In
keeping with the theme of Powering Your Own Adventure, Zoar Outdoor is
installing a solar energy system through collaboration with the Small
Renewables Initiative of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. The system utilizes roof-mounted photovoltaic panels on three adjacent buildings at Hawk Mountain Lodge and the Zoar Outdoor
base. The south-facing roofs of these buildings make the site ideal for
capturing the sun’s energy and transforming it into electrical power.
Each roof-mounted system will provide an average output of 4.5 kW. The
system will meet the annual electrical demand for Hawk Mountain Lodge
and about 30% of the energy needs of the Zoar Outdoor base. The system will be operational by the end of this year.

technology uses semiconductors energized by sunlight to create
electricity. The semiconductors are comprised of cells arranged on a
panel mounted in a location ideal for capturing solar output.  The
Renewable Energy Trust was created by the state in 1998 as part of the
electric utility industry restructuring to promote the development of
renewable energy in the Commonwealth. The Trust is administered by the
Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. The goal is to generate the
maximum economic and environmental benefits from clean energy
resources. Massachusetts Technology Collaborative works with
homeowners, businesses, and public entities across the state designing,
funding and implementing a variety of renewable energy technologies in
order to promote sustainable production of clean energy.  

to Zoar Outdoor President, Bruce Lessels, “We are pleased to
participate in the Small Renewables Initiative because it is in keeping
with our core environmental values.  Solar energy makes sense as a way
to minimize our environmental impact while embracing the latest

Ironically, the Deerfield River, the location of many of Zoar Outdoor’s river trips, is a source of renewable energy itself.
During hydroelectric generation, the water released from dams on the
river serves a dual purpose by also providing flows for recreational
boating such as kayaking, rafting and canoeing. Hydroelectricity
is the largest source of clean energy in the United States and around
the world and a significant source of renewable energy for

Media contact: Karen Blom


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