Every person or entity that goes into business does it with one reason in mind—to make an incredibly large amount of money. Most are would like to give back to the community and/or environment as well (as long as it does not hurt the bottom line). What if you could actually do both? One self storage company thinks they have figured out a way to do just that.
StorageMart, a self storage company with over 130 facilities in Canada and the United States, recently announced that they will be embarking on a solar energy initiative involving their Toronto-area self storage facilities.
With the help of JCM Capital / OZZ Solar, they will be installing 640,000 square feet of solar collectors on the roofs of StorageMart self storage facilities all over Toronto. Installation is already in progress and is expected to continue into the first quarter of 2012.
“We look forward to the completion of this project which will be one of the largest solar generation projects on self storage in North America,” Mike Burnam, Chief Executive Officer at StorageMart said.
When the installation process is done the solar panels will be able to produce approximately 3 megawatts of energy a year. StorageMart will not be looking to use up all the energy in their facilities. They plan on selling it.
In 2009, the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) began what is called a feed-in-tariff program. What this has essentially done is established a price structure by which the OPA will buy energy made from a renewable source like solar panels.
By doing this, they hope to accomplish a few different goals. Primary among them is for Ontario to be done with electricity produced via burning coast. They are also hoping that it will encourage people to develop better technology to harness renewable energy. The economy will receive a boost thanks to those that get involved in the program and through the creation of more ‘green’ jobs.
What the OPA wants to do through this program is to encourage people engaged in other business activities, like StorageMart is in self storage, to get involved in producing renewable energy.
In the United States, Extra Space Storage has embarked on the biggest solar initiative to date for a self storage company (in the U.S.). In the next five years they plan on installing 100,000 solar panels on facilities across the country at a rate of 20,000 a year.
“StorageMart Turns Self Storage Into Renewable Solar Energy.” PRWeb; 25 October 2011.
“Extra Space Storage Leads the Way in Solar Energy.” Self Storage Industry News; 29 July 2011.
What is the Feed-in Tariff Program? Ontario Power Authority.
Feed-In Tariff Program Overview; Ontario Power Authority.