Cover hot parking lots with energy-producing solar arrays

Whole-Foods-Market-Solar-Carport

[image credit: Solarindustrymag.com]

Cars parked in the sun become very hot and uncomfortable

Parking lots exposed to the sun not only create hot and uncomfortable cars but they are also a drain on the environment taking the place of trees and other plants that have beneficial effects on the environment.

Solution: A solar array offsets the cost of a carport

Build solar panel canopies over the parking lot. This provides shade and the solar panels generate power. In some projects water is also captured by the canopies and funneled to a gray water cistern that is used in the facilities toilets.

The projects are still not as profitable as rooftop solar panel projects because they have to construct the canopies in active parking lots, however they still yield about an 8% return on investment.

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Category: Environment

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Article by: McKay Barrow

McKay is researching leading practices in second language acquisition. He has M.A. degrees in Anthropology and Second Language Studies from UC Santa Barbara and the University of Indiana. On a good day he'll tell you about living through the 2009 Urumqi riots in Xinjiang.
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