Home New mexico economy Santa Fe homeless shelter embraces solar power | Local News

Santa Fe homeless shelter embraces solar power | Local News

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Casa Milagro, a Santa Fe homeless center for people with mental illness, intends to light its atmosphere with solar energy.

Desirée Bernard, executive director of Casa Milagro, said the stars (including the sun) have aligned to provide great benefits in its place on Camino Bajo, south of Santa Fe. First, energy efficiency de Casa Milagro last year was significantly improved by an organization in Colorado that is undertaking this work for affordable housing programs.

Second, he expects to receive solar panels this week to generate cheap electricity and save thousands of dollars for the homeless house for years to come.

“It was a synergy, for sure,” Bernard said on Monday of the conversion of energy savings. “It was really lucky that this happened.”

Santa Fe-based Positive Energy Solar is expected to install solar panels this week at Casa Milagro as part of a program coordinated by New Energy Economy.

New Energy Economy, a renewable energy advocacy group in Santa Fe, raised about two-thirds of the $ 54,000 for the solar panel project.

The organization has generated money for a dozen other rural solar panel installations, various fire stations in the city, and county, community and cultural centers in northern New Mexico and other locations. . New energy economy leader Mariel Nanasi said she expected no difficulty in raising the remaining $ 18,000 for the solar installation at Casa Milagro.

Bernard said Casa Milagro last year was also the beneficiary of a Colorado-based nonprofit organization’s work to make affordable housing projects more energy efficient. The International Center for Appropriate and Sustainable Technology has improved the insulation and ductwork in the house and, for the most part, weaned the house off expensive propane gas.

Bernard estimated that solar panels and energy efficiency work will save his organization about $ 12,000 per year.

Casa Milagro has been around for over 20 years and offers transitional and permanent accommodation to around 12 people at a time.

“Oh, I’m excited about the project,” said Jennifer S. Elliott, 42, who has lived at Casa Milagro for more than three years. “As far as helping to keep this planet clean … yes, that’s a good way forward.”

Nanasi said Positive Energy Solar gave it a nearly 20% discount for the solar installation project. The California-based Remy’s Good Day Fund donated $ 20,000 for the installation of solar panels. Remy’s contributed to the Cornerstones Community Partnership’s solar initiative, based in Santa Fe.

Nanasi and New Energy Economy are best known for their reviews of the Public Service Company of New Mexico. Nanasi said on Monday that his group’s principles included tackling climate change and moving away from energy dependence on coal, oil and gas.

By using solar power, Nanasi said, Casa Milagro will be able to apply the savings to programs and increase self-sufficiency.

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