AllEarth Renewables moved into a new and unexpected market when it announced it’s role in a new high-profile solar project at a community center in New Orleans’ Ninth Ward, hard-hit by Hurricane Katrina.
Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation funded a new skate park at the Ward’s community center. Ensuring that the park’s operations were as green as possible was key in a community that has seen, first-hand, the dramatic effects of global climate change, according to a release about the project.
The project worked with local Louisiana solar installer Joule Solar Energy.
AllEarth Renewables manufactures the AllSun Tracker in Vermont and has been steadily growing its network of installers in the Northeast United States, particularly New England.
“This is certainly a different project for us and a different region,” said AllEarth Renewables spokesman Andrew Savage.
The company wasn’t looking to expand to Louisianna.
“Our installer – our new installer, Joule Solar, was looking for a tracking system that would produce the most solar the most efficiently and they called us up,” Savage said. “We started a relationship.”
It just happened that Joule was working on the Make It Right project at the same time and the AllSun Tracker turned out to be a good fit.
“They were eager for something that was ground-mounted and that made a statement visually as well as producing the most energy,” Savage said.
The Ninth Ward celebrated its new community center and skate park on Sept. 26 when the 6-kilowatt AllSun solar tracker was commissioned. It will produce 10,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year and will power the skate park lighting, fans and computers along with some energy for the community center.
Representatives from Pitt’s foundation were at the celebration along with Grammy-winning rapper Lil Wayne, who is also a skater.
In addition to being part of a significant New Orleans community project, the skate park marks the beginning of a new relationship and market opportunities for the AllSun solar tracker in a new state and geographical area.