Local organizations including Focus on Energy, the City of Milwaukee- Milwaukee Shines group, We Energies and Johnson Controls recently partnered with the Augusta M. LaVarnway Boys & Girls Club, 2739 N. 15th St in Milwaukee to install 24 solar panels on the organization’s roof to help reduce energy costs by helping to heat the club’s pool and water.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee is one of the participating agencies in the City of Milwaukee’s Solar America Cities program, Milwaukee Shines. The LaVarnway Boys & Girls Club is the first solar water heating demonstration project funded by Milwaukee Shines through the Solar America Cities’ “special projects” award.
“Conventional water heaters can be very polluting,” said Andrea Luecke, project manager for Milwaukee Shines. “Although solar hot water systems cost more than electric or gas heaters, once the solar systems are installed utility costs are often dramatically reduced.”
A similar installation is soon-to-be completed at the Don & Sallie Davis Boys & Girls Club, located at 1975 W. Rogers St.
The club predicts the installation of the water heaters will create cost savings of nearly $500,000 over the next 30 years between the two buildings.
“Part of helping young people reach their full potential requires doing what we can to maximize our resources while saving money,” said Jim Clark, Boys and Girls Club President and CEO. “With the solar panels at our LaVarnway and Davis Boys & Girls Clubs, the energy savings will allow us to reinvest funds into programs that enrich young lives.”