Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 51.76
Liaison Audrey McSain
Submission Date Nov. 16, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Lehigh University
IN-24: Innovation A

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Katharine Targett Gross
Sustainability Officer
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Solar Array Community Garden

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:

In Spring 2016 sixteen solar panels were installed in the Lehigh Community Garden up on Goodman Campus by the Low Energy Sustainable Farming Mountaintop Team to create an energy independent food growing farm.

This project was part of Lehigh’s Mountaintop initiative, which is a summer experience where Lehigh students, working across all disciplines, are given the freedom to pursue creative and innovative answers to any number of challenges and open-ended questions. The Low Energy Sustainable Farming Mountaintop Team consisted of six students and two faculty members who focused on the idea of sustainable farming to create a fully energy independent food growing enterprise at the Lehigh Goodman Community Garden.

As part of this, one element of the project involved the installation of sixteen solar panels. Each panel can generate a maximum of 255 watts, thus creating a maximum of just over 4,000 watts of energy. The panels provide electricity to power the garden’s water pump instead of having to use a diesel generator. As a result, these panels offset the power used by the garden’s water pump as well as the electricity used by the nearby Lehigh transportation building.

This project is just one example of how Lehigh students and faculty utilize the campus as a living laboratory and how multidisciplinary student research across campus generates potential solutions that positively impact the institution. Through Mountaintop projects like this that are focused on sustainability, faculty and students help to create sustainable change on campus. It is the hope that sixteen more panels will be installed in the coming months, next to the first installation.

Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Campus Engagement
Food & Dining

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :
The website URL where information about the innovation is available :

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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