A 1.2-MW, family-owned solar project in Longmont, Colorado, is now selling 10% of its power to a Boulder-based cannabis company. Terrapin’s 10% share of Jack’s Solar Garden will allow the company to power 25% of its indoor grow operations.
Terrapin will receive monthly bill credits on its Xcel Energy electricity bill for its subscription to Jack’s Solar Garden. As part of the subscription, Terrapin plans to support Jack’s in a number of ways, including providing volunteer tour guides when the community solar garden begins hosting public events again.
“Indoor cannabis growth has become a sizable source of greenhouse gas emissions in our state. From high-intensity grow lights to the use of CO2 to increase crop yields, the indoor cannabis cultivation life cycle produces a significant amount of carbon emissions,” said Chris Woods, Terrapin’s CEO. “The cannabis industry should consider its carbon footprint as we develop and expand. Terrapin is proud to lead the way in sustainability by addressing how energy intensive indoor grows can curb its environmental impact via unique solutions such as this.”
A recent paper in Nature Sustainability revealed indoor cannabis cultivation creates about 2.6 million metric tons of CO2-equivalent annually, and the paper’s co-author estimates that indoor cannabis is responsible for about 1.7% of the Colorado’s annual greenhouse gas emissions.
As the largest agrivoltaics research site in the United States, Jack’s Solar Garden is a national model for how to produce renewable energy while keeping the soils beneath solar panels active for agricultural production. Agrivoltaics is the practice of codeveloping land for both solar energy and crop production. Jack’s has partnered with NREL, Colorado State University and the University of Arizona to study how best to cultivate vegetation within the solar array and with Sprout City Farms to train Colorado’s first agrivoltaic farmers on a few acres of land at Jack’s. Terrapin’s subscription helps enable this agrivoltaics research and many more social and environmental activities being conducted at Jack’s Solar Garden.
“I thoroughly appreciate Terrapin’s subscription to Jack’s Solar Garden! Their subscription supports all our activities – from agrivoltaic research to hosting Audubon Rockies’ largest Habitat Hero in Colorado to our donation of electricity bill credits to low-income households in Boulder County,” said Byron Kominek, Jack’s Solar Garden’s owner and manager. “The generous support of commercial subscribers like Terrapin allows us to focus on the community part of our community solar garden.”
News item from Terrapin