The Concept2 Green Team, composed of employees who review our environmental practices, recently made a visit to our neighbor in the industrial park: Butternut Mountain Farm. The purpose of our visit was to see the rooftop solar photovoltaic system on their newest building. They expect it to produce 105kW of electricity, which is a healthy portion of their annual power use. At Concept2, we currently have seven tracking solar arrays that produce about 20% of our power needs—and we have two buildings with ample south-facing roofs where we could produce most of the rest of our electricity. Thus, the visit.
Butternut Mountain Farm handles at least 50% of Vermont’s maple crop each year, bringing syrup from sugar makers around the state, packaging and selling to buyers of all sizes around the world. Buy your syrup at Williams Sonoma or Whole Foods? It’s coming from Butternut Mountain Farm. They also produce maple sugar and maple candy.
Butternut Mountain Farm is doing more than harnessing the power of the sun. They compost some of the byproducts of syrup production along with their kitchen waste and paper towels. They use their process heat to help warm their buildings in winter. They return cardboard boxes for reuse, and they recycle metal containers for scrap. They have a "no idling" policy for vehicles at their facility and are using energy-efficient lighting systems. Impressive.
Concept2’s Green Team has been recently re-invigorated and is meeting regularly—taking stock of all the green things we already do and prioritizing a list of new projects. Some of the things we’re working on, besides rooftop solar, include better management of the many thermostats in our two buildings, getting back into composting, and recycling even more than we do already. We’ll keep you updated in future blog posts.