In a groundbreaking effort to actively reduce its energy consumption, Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival has installed the USA’s first permanent solar array for a major music festival. The 50 kW solar photovoltaic, system supports 20% of the festival's energy needs.
The solar project was fully funded by ‘opt-in’ contributions that fans selected during the ticket buying process. In 2012 to generate guaranteed resources, a US$1 fee was added to every ticket sold to enable the financing for the wonderful additional green initiatives at the event. Bonnaroo fans can take full credit for helping the event to expand its environmental commitment. Past dollars have been used to fund the compost pad, the garden, and the ‘Mobile Tower of Power’.
The solar system installed at the permanent event site, is comprised of 196 American-made SolarWorld solar panels along with micro-inverters and related components mounted to the roof of a metal structure in the festival's back stage area. It generates more than 61 000 kWh per year.
As a certified participant in the local power authority’s Green Power Provider Program, Bonnaroo sells the energy produced by the solar system back to the local utility distribution network.