PAHRUMP, NV – Valley Electric Association, Inc., (VEA) a member-owned electric cooperative based in Pahrump, Nevada, announced the cooperative recently received a 2014 Green Award from the Las Vegas Business Press as a result of its efforts in developing one of the nation’s largest and most successful domestic solar water heating programs.
The Las Vegas Business Press, Southern Nevada’s leading weekly business publication, hosts the Green Awards each year to recognize individuals and businesses that promote and implement sustainable practices.
As one of nine winners selected from a wide variety of nominees across Southern Nevada, VEA received recognition alongside a number of other prominent organizations and individuals, including Three Square food bank, Springs Preserve and Opportunity Village. VEA won the annual award in the Best Green Practices, Products category.
“The Best Green Practices, Products category highlights companies or individuals who provide a superior product or service that allows others to be more green in their businesses or at home,” said Debbie Donaldson, publisher of the Las Vegas Business Press. “VEA’s Domestic Solar Water Heating Program fit right into this category. VEA was just head and shoulders above any other entry we received in the category.”
Chris Brooks, VEA’s executive vice president of energy services, accepted the award on behalf of VEA during the Green Awards ceremony at the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas on July 18. During the event, Brooks presented the Las Vegas Business Press with 1 megawatt-hour worth of renewable energy credits to help offset the energy impact of the event.
“VEA is committed to supporting Nevada’s renewable energy market and providing community members with improved access to green technology,” Brooks said following the event. “We would like to thank the Las Vegas Business Press for recognizing VEA’s Domestic Solar Water Heating Program. This program plays a valuable role in reducing energy expenses for a growing number of families in southwestern Nevada.”
Developed in 2009, VEA’s Domestic Solar Water Heating Program provides residents of the cooperative’s service area with an energy-saving alternative to electric and gas water heaters. Since the program’s inception, VEA has installed approximately 825 solar water heaters in local communities, offering on-bill financing with zero-percent interest and no down payments. VEA has provided approximately $4 million in loans to finance solar water heaters.
Each solar water heating unit offers an average of $253 to $546 in energy savings per year, essentially offsetting members’ monthly payments for the systems in most cases. In addition, each single-panel unit averts 3,082 pounds of carbon dioxide per year, reducing the carbon footprint of VEA members.
“The Domestic Solar Water Heating Program serves as a foundation for the development of VEA’s future renewable energy programs,” Brooks said. “We recently began the planning phase for a new photovoltaic energy program, and we look forward to announcing more details about this endeavor in the near future.”
For more information about VEA’s Domestic Solar Water Heating Program, visit www.vea.coop.
About Valley Electric Association, Inc.
Valley Electric Association, Inc. (VEA) is a member-owned, nonprofit electric utility headquartered in Pahrump, Nevada. While VEA started as a small, rural electric utility in 1965, the company now provides service to more than 45,000 people within a vast 6,800-square-mile service area located primarily along the California-Nevada border, with the majority in Nevada. VEA’s service area starts in Sandy Valley, southwest of Las Vegas, and extends north for more than 250 miles to Fish Lake Valley. For more information about VEA, please visit www.vea.coop.