Quixotic Systems Inc. has completed a 546-kilowatt (kW) solar power system for Conca D’Oro Importers LLC, a national distributor of specialty Italian foods and beverages based in Totowa, N.J. The rooftop solar system, which will provide clean energy for the distributor’s warehousing, refrigeration and operations, will pay for itself in three years and save the company more than $2.7 million over the system’s life.
Food distributors provide a vital service to the American food market – connecting farms and packaged food companies with the restaurants and retailers who sell their food. But distributors have seen rising costs in fuel, freight and labor in recent years. For New Jersey distributors like Conca D’Oro, installing a rooftop solar system is one way to offset these expenses — while reducing the state’s carbon emissions.
“Solar offers a very positive return on investment and helps us reduce our reliance on fossil-fuel generated electricity, which is important to our customers and community,” said Paolo Salvia, president, Conca D’Oro Importers, LLC.
New Jersey’s favorable solar policies have been a model for other states and helps companies like Conca D’Oro realize rapid payback for their solar investment. The cost of the project was reduced by more than 60 percent through a combination of tax credits and incentives such as New Jersey’s Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs), which enable solar project owners to sell certificates for their clean energy. New Jersey’s favorable net metering rate structure also ensures that commercial entities realize substantial savings with solar.
Conca D’Oro’s solar system, which includes 1,500 solar panels ballasted on the facility’s 100,000-square-foot roof, will offset the company’s electricity use by 60 percent. The company will save an estimated $60,000 per year on its electricity bill alone, not including tax credits, SRECs or depreciation benefits.
“For food distributors who typically have large warehouse space with flat roofs and high energy costs, solar is an excellent business decision,” said Richard Klein, president of Quixotic Systems. “Now is the time to take advantage of high-value SRECs as well.”
— Solar Builder magazine