Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Kentucky Coal Museum Goes Solar

Popular
Kentucky Coal Museum Goes Solar

The Kentucky Coal Mining Museum will always commemorate the past, but now it's also looking to the future by switching to solar power.


The museum, owned by Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College, is located in Benham, a once thriving coal town portrayed in the 1976 Oscar-winning documentary Harlan County, USA.

The museum decided to move forward with the solar project after budget cuts pressured the college to reduce operating expenses.

"In the current economic times we're in, any way to save money is always appreciated and helpful," Brandon Robinson, museum communications director, said. "Especially when that's money we put back toward teaching our students.

"We believe that this project will help save at least eight to ten thousand dollars off the energy costs on this building alone, so it's a very worthy effort and it's going to save the college money in the long run.

"It is a little ironic," admitted Robinson. "But you know, coal and solar and all the different energy sources work hand-in-hand."

Work to install the panels began Tuesday by Bluegrass Solar.

"I think everybody knows when we're talking about attractions like this—these high-volume, low-traffic municipal attractions—something has got to give, to keep their expenses down," said Tre Sexton, owner of Bluegrass Solar. Sexton told EKB-TV that the panels will generate more power than is needed by the museum, and the surplus will be fed back into the city's grid.

"Clean energy is cheaper, it saves money, and it reduces pollution," said Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club. "So it's no surprise that communities and institutions around the country are installing it as fast as they can."

Sexton told Yahoo News that the project was funded by numerous sources, including multiple companies and local philanthropists.

Christian Aslund / EyeEm / Getty Images

By Anne-Sophie Brändlin

COVID-19 and climate change have been two of the most pressing issues in 2020.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Artist's impression of an Othalo community, imagined by architect Julien De Smedt. Othalo

By Victoria Masterson

Using one of the world's problems to solve another is the philosophy behind a Norwegian start-up's mission to develop affordable housing from 100% recycled plastic.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Pexels

By Brett Wilkins

Despite acknowledging that the move would lead to an increase in the 500 million to one billion birds that die each year in the United States due to human activity, the Trump administration on Friday published a proposed industry-friendly relaxation of a century-old treaty that protects more than 1,000 avian species.

Read More Show Less
U.S. returns create about 15 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions. manonallard / Getty Images

Many people shop online for everything from clothes to appliances. If they do not like the product, they simply return it. But there's an environmental cost to returns.

Read More Show Less
Climate Envoy John Kerry (L) and President-elect Joseph (R) are seen during Kerry's ceremonial swearing in as Secretary of State on February 6, 2013 in Washington, DC. Alex Wong / Getty Images

By Dolf Gielen and Morgan Bazilian

John Kerry helped bring the world into the Paris climate agreement and expanded America's reputation as a climate leader. That reputation is now in tatters, and President-elect Joe Biden is asking Kerry to rebuild it again – this time as U.S. climate envoy.

Read More Show Less