On Tu B’Shevat, UA Hillel Foundation to celebrate with solar power dedication

The University of Arizona Hillel Foundation has joined the solar revolution.

Its 42.5 kilowatt photovoltaic system, designed and installed by the Tucson-based Technicians for Sustainability, consists of 135 solar modules mounted on the roof of the Hillel building. The panels will produce over 6,000 kW per month, covering approximately 75 percent of Hillel’s electrical usage. It is estimated that over the next 20 years the solar system will save Hillel over $100,000 on utility bills.

Hillel chose to work with Technicians for Sustainability to support the local business community. “Hillel’s close connections to both the university and Tucson communities are fundamental to our work,” says UA Hillel Executive Director Mi­chelle Blumenberg.

According to Genesis 2:15, man was placed “in the Garden of Eden to work it and to guard it.” Solar power from the system will offset over 167,000 lbs. of carbon dioxide each year, which is the equivalent of planting 3,700 new trees annually. By installing this solar system, says Blumenberg, Hillel is demonstrating its commitment to taking care of its garden and to tikkun olam (repairing the world).

On Monday, Jan. 25 at 4:30 p.m., which corresponds to the Hebrew date of Tu B’Shevat, the New Year of the Trees, Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild and UA Vice President for Innovation and Strategy Joaquin Ruiz will assist in the dedication of this new system. A brief program will be followed by a reception celebrating Tu B’Shevat. Hillel is located at 1245 E. Second St. RSVP at 624-6561.