NOLS Pacific Northwest
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NOLS Pacific Northwest is one of nine branch schools of the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS). The mission of NOLS is to be the leading source and teacher of wilderness skills and leadership that serve people and the environment. Founded in 1965, one of their primary objectives is to broaden their students' environmental awareness and practices. NOLS instituted a comprehensive Sustainability Initiative to increase staff and student environmental awareness and significantly reduce their school-wide environmental footprint. All nine branch schools are taking active steps to reduce their consumption through conservation, education and conversion to renewable sources of energy.
In September of 2013, NOLS Pacific Northwest installed a 9.54-kilowatt photovoltaic (PV) system with funding and assistance from The North Face. The new installation will decrease the electricity needs for the office and will serve as an education tool for NOLS students and the community.
Thanks to the continued support from The North Face and an Energy Explorer project from Solar 4R Schools, this system will decrease the electricity needs for the office while serving as an education tool for NOLS students and the community. Energy monitoring provided to NOLS connected the live performance data from their PV system to the Energy Exploration Center at Solar4RSchools.org. Students and educators nationwide can chart, graph and analyze the system's performance data for educational purposes. A touchscreen kiosk located within the NOLS Pacific Northwest facility allows staff, NOLS students, and guests to interact with the system's live performance data while learning about the science and benefits of renewable energy.
"NOLS has been a valued partner of The North Face and we are very aligned with their efforts to get more people outdoors," said Adam Mott, senior manager of corporate sustainability at The North Face. "When they approached us with the opportunity to provide power at their Pacific Northwest office while turning the system into an educational tool, we gladly signed on as a sponsor. This photovoltaic installation will not only decrease their energy bill, but it will introduce students and staff to the positive effects of energy conservation and raise awareness about the impact of climate change."