Lawson’s Finest Liquids announced the completion of what it says is the largest solar canopy in the state of Vermont. The Waitsfield Brewery and Taproom was generating about 10% of the electricity to run its operation, but with the addition of 215 kW from 495 solar modules, it expects that 60% of its electricity bill will be offset with net metering credits.
The canopy, built by SunCommon, features 495 REC 375W solar modules, which are arranged above 40 covered parking spaces. Customers with electric vehicles can top off the battery at the 10 level-two electric vehicle charging stations.
SunCommon, an iSun company, installs residential, community, and commercial solar, as well as battery storage. Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR) awarded co-founder Duane Peterson its Terry Ehrich Lifetime Achievement Award for sustainable business. Parent corporation, iSun, has a portfolio of over 400 MW solar installed across residential, commercial, industrial, and utility-scale sectors.
Lawson’s Finest Liquids, the company that owns the Waitsfield Brewery, makes sustainability a priority. The project, built throughout 2021 and early 2022, is part of the company’s Green is Grand initiative within the Social Impact Program (SIP). They first installed solar panels on the brewery in 2019, an independent wastewater management system in 2018, and they partner with local businesses to responsibly recycle spent grain and byproducts. Through its SIP program, Lawson’s Finest builds connections and strengthens communities. Since 2018 it has donated more than $1 million to area causes.
“When my wife Karen and I started Lawson’s Finest, values were at the center of what we wanted to do with our business,” said Sean Lawson, CEO and Founding Brewer of Lawson’s Finest Liquids. “From the beginning we set out to be the finest, source the best ingredients, invest in state-of-the-art equipment, brew the best beer possible and cultivate healthy, vibrant communities. That’s why our efforts in sustainability and striving to offset our brewery’s utility bill through renewable energy are so important to us.”
A celebration of the completion of the parking canopy and its continued dedication to sustainability and green energy was held on Earth Day with Vermont’s renewable energy leaders in attendance to celebrate Lawson’s Finest solar power expansion.
“Businesses like Lawson’s show us that it’s possible to provide great products, grow to meaningful scale, and generate financial success all while creating increasingly positive impact on the communities where Vermonters live and work,” said Duane Peterson, co-founder at SunCommon, “We’re stoked to partner with Lawson’s to further expand their sustainable practices. Now we can all enjoy a ‘Sip of Sunshine’ in more ways than one!”
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