According to a spokesperson for the brewery, the 9.7 acre buildout is currently underway and projected to go live by the end of the year.
“We always strive to improve beer quality while minimizing our environmental impacts,” said co-founder Adam Firestone, referring to the brewery's other sustainability efforts that include converting spent grains from the brewing process into feed for local livestock, using specialized equipment, looped systems and careful engineering strategies to conserve and reuse water, natural gas and electricity, as well as repurposing retired tanks and other equipment into usable items such as booths for Taproom restaurant seating. “The new solar array is an extension of this approach.”
It is estimated that the 2.1-megawatt array being built on the land adjacent to the brewery will generate 4,570 MWh (megawatt hours) of electricity each year, offsetting up to 80% of its overall energy use, the spokesperson said.
A second, smaller 277-kilowatt solar installation will occupy a parking shade structure spanning 14,000 square feet just south of the brewery.
In partnership with the City of Paso Robles and REC Solar, co-founder David Walker says using sunshine to fuel the brewery is a simple way they can work to reduce their carbon footprint.
“Brewers have sought to conserve energy for centuries, and we want to continue that tradition here on the Central Coast,” said Walker.
For more information on Firestone Walker’s sustainability programs at https://stories.firestonebeer.com/sustainability/
Lisa André covers Valley Life for Santa Ynez Valley News.
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