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The Sustainable Energy Fund has given the College a grant to construct a solar array at Metzger Fields

The Sustainable Energy Fund will hold its 2009 Sustainable Energy Conference July 27-Aug. 1 at Lafayette College.

The conference will feature speakers, hands-on sessions, panel discussions, and workshops. Among the speakers will be James Cawley, chair of the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission; Eugene DePasquale, state representative from York County; Dan Griffiths, deputy secretary of PA Department of Environmental Protection; and Mark S. Singel, former lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania.

SEF has given the College a $15,000 grant to fund the construction and installation of Lafayette’s second solar array, a 3-kilowatt panel to be installed at Metzger Fields Athletic Complex. The solar array could be used to power equipment for the College’s composting and community gardens project at Metzger. The College’s other solar array is a 2-kilowatt panel on top of Acopian Engineering Center.

Lafayette President Daniel H. Weiss says, “We are very enthusiastic to host this event. Lafayette is deeply committed to the issue of sustainability. We consider it central to our purpose and mission as a college.”

SEF also is partnering with the Lehigh Valley Workforce Investment Board during the conference for a one-day green-jobs training session for 50 Lehigh Valley workers who have been laid off during the recession.

The conference will wrap up July 31 and Aug. 1 with a sustainable energy vendors public exhibition on March Field featuring family activities, solar-powered vehicles, and competitions. Admission for the exhibition is $5.

The conference is a unique educational event grown out of SEF’s Solar Scholars program, which promotes the adoption and integration of renewable energy concepts and technology into the curriculum of colleges and universities. The conference’s mission is to cultivate a comprehensive understanding of and passion for sustainable energy technologies, economics, and public policy in students, policy makers, consumers, business leaders, and entrepreneurs. This will bring about the informed decisions necessary to provide for the energy needed today without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.

SEF, based in Allentown, is a private nonprofit dedicated to promoting renewable energy, clean energy technologies, energy conservation and efficiency, energy education, and financing opportunities related to renewable energy.

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