The Mitsubishi Electric array is the first in a series of green energy projects being undertaken by Sustainability in Sport – which was set up by former Manchester United star Gary Neville and Dale Vince, the founder of green energy company Ecotricity – aimed at reducing the environmental impact of sport.
Dale Vince said: “Sustainability in Sport was created to inspire change within the sports community and to urgently address the significant environmental impact of sport. We’re here to change the rules of the game – putting Sustainability into the heart of Sport.
“Sport has a large and passionate audience that we can engage with through Sustainability in Sport and our work at Forest Green Rovers. This first project will put solar panels in plain sight of football fans – it’s not just about making green electricity and saving carbon emissions (important as they are) – it’s about stimulating thought and debate. Showcasing new technology and new ways of doing things.”
Hemel Hempstead-based Beba Energy, which installs PV arrays nationwide, took four days to complete the installation of the 184 panel array, which has a South / South East facing aspect.
The PV-MLT255HC premium high efficiency monocrystalline panels link to a Fronius CL48 inverter and have an estimated yield of 39,400 kWh per year, earning the Gloucestershire club an annual income from the Government’s Feed in Tariff – half of which will go to Sustainability in Sport.
“We have come a long way in making Forest Green Rovers a more sustainable football club and are using this as a test bed to what can be achieved with sport in the community,” added Dale Vince.
Forest Green Rovers are creating the world’s first organic football pitch irrigated with recycled water and have removed red-meat from the menu to cut carbon emissions.
The solar panels will be used to power floodlights and maintenance equipment such as electric mowers and strimmers to reduce emissions at the club even further.