NSCC Strait Area Cam­pus ap­proved for pro­vin­cial so­lar pro­gram

Seventy-five kilo­watts of so­lar elec­tric­ity pan­els to be in­stalled by Fire School

The Casket - - Local - RICHARD MACKEN­ZIE richard­mac@the­cas­ket.ca

Al­ready very close to their short­term en­ergy re­duc­tion and waste man­age­ment goals, Nova Sco­tia Com­mu­nity Col­lege (NSCC) will move even closer with the Sept. 24 an­nounce­ment re­gard­ing the Strait Area Cam­pus be­ing ap­proved for the pro­vin­cial govern­ment’s So­lar Elec­tric­ity for Com­mu­nity Build­ings Pro­gram.

Nova Sco­tia En­ergy and Mines Min­is­ter Derek Mom­bour­quette, MLA for Syd­ney-whit­ney Pier, was at the Port Hawkes­bury­based cam­pus for the an­nounce­ment.

“This pro­gram gives lo­cal or­ga­ni­za­tions a chance to par­tic­i­pate in, and ben­e­fit from, Nova Sco­tia's progress to­ward a cleaner en­ergy fu­ture,” Mom­bour­quette said. “Our prov­ince is, al­ready, a leader in ad­dress­ing cli­mate change by re­duc­ing emis­sions and th­ese projects will only build on our suc­cesses.”

The Strait Area Cam­pus project in­volves in­stalling 75 kilo­watts of so­lar elec­tric­ity pan­els on the field, next to the Fire School.

“With the ad­di­tion of this so­lar in­stal­la­tion, we are help­ing to re­duce the prov­ince’s de­pen­dence on fos­sil fu­els, while sup­port­ing the col­lege’s na­tion­ally rec­og­nized sus­tain­abil­ity agenda,” Mon­ica Fos­ter, NSCC vice-pres­i­dent, col­lege ser­vices, and chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer, said in a re­lease, which ac­com­pa­nied the an­nounce­ment.

“This re­source will not only sup­port our sus­tain­abil­ity goals, it will also al­low for an en­hanced stu­dent ex­pe­ri­ence by pro­vid­ing a hands-on learn­ing lab for sev­eral of our pro­grams.”

Strait Area Cam­pus Prin­ci­pal Tom Gunn spoke dur­ing the an­nounce­ment and noted the fig­ures which in­di­cate NSCC is clos­ing in on their tar­gets.

“Since 2008, 2009, we have re­duced our green­house gas emis­sions by 39 per cent and our goal is to hit a 40 per cent re­duc­tion by 2020; so we’re pretty close to that goal,” Gunn said.

“But the col­lege has com­mit­ted now to meet our long-term goal of 60 per cent by 2030 and 80 per cent by 2050.”

He talked about mul­ti­ple ben­e­fits with the an­nounce­ment.

“It’s ex­cit­ing; not only does it help with our en­vi­ron­men­tal foot­print, again, but it’s also a learn­ing en­vi­ron­ment for the stu­dents. We’re an­tic­i­pat­ing dif­fer­ent pro­grams can ac­quire data from the so­lar project.”

Mom­bour­quette did the same when talk­ing with re­porters fol­low­ing the an­nounce­ment.

“Lo­cal ven­dors will come in and help in­stall and this is also a great learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for stu­dents, who are here on cam­pus, who may be in­ter­ested in this,” he said, not­ing a cou­ple of stu­dents had just asked him about so­lar out­put.

“(Th­ese projects) en­hance the pro­gram­ing for the stu­dents and en­sure they’re ready for the work­place,” he said, not­ing it pro­vides more op­tions for stu­dents.

“Out­side the more tra­di­tional sec­tors, you now have so­lar, wind, tidal and other emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies that they may ex­cess, or even be­come em­ployed in when they grad­u­ate.”

Mom­bour­quette also talked more about how the an­nounce­ment aligns with the prov­ince’s goals.

“We have in­vested mil­lions in fam­i­lies who want to re­duce their car­bon foot­print and this is an­other pro­gram that we of­fer,” he said. “We’ve seen a num­ber of ap­pli­ca­tions come in, projects that want to be ap­proved with our part­ner­ship, and to­day we’re do­ing that.

“We heard Prin­ci­pal Gunn talk about how NSCC, across the prov­ince, has re­duced their car­bon foot­print and con­tin­ues to do so; that is why to­day is so im­por­tant. They had this project they wanted to get go­ing and we thought it was a good one, so here we are to­day … this is a good an­nounce­ment for the whole area.”

Richard Macken­zie

Town of Port Hawkes­bury Mayor Brenda Chisholm-beaton and NSCC Strait Area Cam­pus Prin­ci­pal Tom Gunn (stand­ing, sec­ond row) join a num­ber of stu­dents and Nova Sco­tia En­ergy and Mines Min­is­ter Derek Mom­bour­quette (front, fourth from left) for a photo fol­low­ing the Sept. 24 an­nounce­ment that the school has been ap­proved for the pro­vin­cial govern­ment’s So­lar Elec­tric­ity for Com­mu­nity Build­ings Pro­gram.

Richard Macken­zie

Nova Sco­tia En­ergy and Mines Min­is­ter Derek Mom­bour­quette, MLA for Syd­ney-whit­ney Pier, speak­ing at the NSCC Strait Area Cam­pus, Sept. 24.

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