The Crosby’s convenience store in Lockport, N.Y., says it expects the equivalent of 70 free days of electricity per year from an array of solar power panels it’s now showing off.

The chain, a subsidiary of Lockport-based Reid Petroleum, says it plans to add solar power to another store in Cheektowaga, N.Y., by December. The 198-panel array to the east of the store’s parking lot will generate a maximum of 51.5 kw. of power per year, or about 20% of the store’s electricity usage. That’s about the same amount of electricity it takes to power 5.4 average homes.

“It’s a 52-kw. green, mean electric machine,” says town supervisor Marc R. Smith. “This is the wave of the future.”

Reid Group president Paul Quebral adds that besides saving money, the output “reduces stress on the electric power grid.”

“It takes a forward-thinking company like Reid Petroleum, like Montante Solar, to go out and take advantage of the change in the laws,” says State Senator George D. Maziarz, chairman of the Senate Energy Committee. “The price of solar installation is dropping dramatically. Solar is the way to go in the state of New York.”

Source: The Buffalo News