Energy from the sun is now being used to help operate a Niagara County convenience store.
A 200-panel solar array system has been installed outside the Crosby's store on Lake Avenue in Lockport. Company President Paul Quebral says the panels will generate more than 55,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year, enough to power the entire store for about 70 days.
"This installation will allow us to save money and reduce energy consumption, while at the same time producing green, renewable power that reduces stress on the regional electric grid," Quebral said.
Officials would not say how much the solar array cost, but partial funding came from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. The system will generate enough electricity to offset about 20 percent of the store's energy consumption.
"This system is a serious statement about our company's focus on long term sustainability," Quebral said.
The company is expected to recoup its investment within four or five years. Quebral says he hopes to expand the solar initiative to his other stores.