Viña Palo Alto develops solar energy project for school

Viña Palo Alto, in Chile’s Maule Valley, has funded a solar energy project for a local school as part of its ‘Enjoy Wine, Go Solar’ campaign.

The project, initiated earlier this year, will work with the authorities of the Municipality of Pencahue and will benefit 200 pupils as well as teachers and administrative staff at the Santa Laura de Lo Figueroa School.

Developed ‘with the technical support of Tesla Energy,’ the new technology will reduce the school’s carbon footprint, deliver greater energy efficiency, reduce expenses and provide a reliable source of hot water.

Viña Palo Alto will help to install sixteen photovoltaic panels, a three-phase inverter and three heat pumps. The system is expected to generate 8 megawatt-hours per year and enough electricity to power the three solar pumps as well as the rest of the school’s energy requirements.

Martin Cuthbert, marketing manager of Quinta de Maipo, Viña Palo Alto’s parent company, commented: “With this initiative we hope to make a concrete contribution to the community and the environment in this area of the Maule Valley. It is these types of outcomes that, as a company, we treasure as a great achievement, and make us realize the importance of us getting involved. “

“We understand that, in order to yield fruits, this is an effort that must be maintained over time, so we will be happy to review new proposals for development and support for this area, which is so close to us as a winery”.

Luis Amigo, principal of Santa Laura de Lo Figueroa School added: “Many times the students had to go home without showering because they did not have hot water in the dressing rooms.“

“This improvement will change our lives positively, which means a lot to us. We are very grateful to Viña Palo Alto for having contributed in this way, it is something admirable”.

Since 2006, Viña Palo Alto has been involved in a number of both environmental and charitable initiatives in Chile. It runs a sister campaign called ‘Enjoy Wine, Give Water’ which funds the installation of water towers in areas that have difficulty accessing drinking water. In addition, the ‘Bosque Palo Alto Patagonia’ campaign aims to combat deforestation in Patagonia and, as a direct result of the project, more than 10,000 trees have been planted to restore Patagonia’s diverse ecosystem and to help reduce climate change.

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