Go green, go solar gardening



One thing that solar garden developers know how to do, besides build solar gardens, is promote themselves.

David Amster-Olszewski, the former Colorado College student who's heading up SunShare's solar garden, has released a notice that none other than Gov. John Hickenlooper will attend the groundbreaking for a garden at Venetucci Farm. This will take place at 10:30 a.m. on Nov. 29, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

Also on hand will be City Council President Pro Tem Jan Martin, Springs Utilities CEO Jerry Forte, Pikes Peak Community Foundation Executive Director Michael Hannigan and Amster-Olszewski himself.

The project is SunShare's first of several it plans along the Front Range.

CECs array in Rifle.
  • Clean Energy Collective's array in Rifle.

Meanwhile, across the state, Clean Energy Collective of Carbondale, which recently announced it, too, would be building a solar garden here, put out a press release about the Department of Energy's giving the company the Innovative Green Power Program of the Year Award.

The company has installed several solar gardens so far, partnering with Holy Cross Energy, a rural electric cooperative in western Colorado. Clean Energy Collective's business model differs from SunShare's lease plan by actually selling panels to investors, who can later sell them to someone else or bequeath them to someone or whatever.

“We are honored and very appreciative to receive such an outstanding accolade in our industry," said CEC founder and president Paul Spencer. "Our model is proving to be a game changer for renewable energy adoption, and significantly expands what's possible for our new energy economy."

Spencer received the award at a ceremony held in San Francisco. Green Power Leadership Awards are made annually to recognize organizations that distinguish themselves among green power market participants in the United States. The Innovative Green Power Program of the Year award recognizes the top organization advancing the market through innovative approaches to delivering green power to the marketplace.

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