APS Helps Suns Go Solar

Posted: March 5, 2012

The Phoenix Suns have a new POWER forward. Today, the Suns, along with Arizona Public Service and the City of Phoenix dedicated the APS SunsPowered Solar Structure – 966 solar panels located on the 5th level of the US Airways Center parking garage.

Suns guard Steve Nash, Suns President Brad Casper, APS Chairman and CEO Don Brandt and Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton helped ‘flip-the-switch’ at the dedication ceremony, signifying the start-up of the 227-kilowatt solar system.

“The spirit of innovation and environmental consciousness shown by the Suns, APS and the City of Phoenix is something I’m proud to be a part of,” said Nash. “I’ve become very passionate towards environmental issues over the years, so it’s great to know that solar power is now impacting my life both at home and here at work.”

“We are excited to dedicate a project that was simply a vision back in 2008,” said Casper. “APS stepped up and helped make that vision a reality here at US Airways Center, powering the arena with clean, renewable energy, enhancing our commitment to sustainability.”

The APS-owned system utilizes 966 solar panels, covers approximately 17,000 square feet and produces 378,000 kilowatt-hours each year – enough energy to power 20 game days each season for the Suns.

“At APS, we have established a vision of creating a sustainable energy future for Arizona,” said APS’s Brandt. “This project represents an effort to utilize one of Arizona’s greatest assets – our abundant sunshine – to meet our growing power needs, improve the environment and strengthen our economy.”
“I proudly call this exciting project a win-win-win for everyone,” said Mayor Stanton. “The City-owned U.S. Airways Center is now powered with clean, renewable solar energy; the Suns further strengthen their claim as the most innovative and forward-thinking organization in the NBA, and APS has, once again, displayed their unwavering dedication to a better, cleaner energy future for our state.”

APS’s total renewable portfolio has grown from less than one megawatt a decade ago to more than 900 megawatts today – including projects online and in development – and includes a diverse mix of solar, wind, biomass and geothermal energy. That is enough renewable energy to power 225,000 Arizona homes.

In addition to the new solar project, the Phoenix Suns have incorporated a number of environmentally friendly practices into the organization’s daily business routines, including the conversion of all arena lighting to energy efficient lighting, implementing both in-arena and in-office recycling, and initiating an incentive-driven employee carpooling program.