PLANO, Texas: The Plano-based nonprofit, My Possibilities, pioneered continuing education for adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities in North Texas when it opened in June 2008. In 2019, the organization is once again a North Texas pioneer, helping lead a growing percentage of businesses and professional organizations in the region that are tapping solar energy to power operations.
The solar array installed at My Possibilities (3601 Mapleshade Lane) was funded in part via a $200,000 grant from SUN CLUB, an initiative of Green Mountain Energy dedicated to investing in nonprofits to advance sustainability for people and for the planet. The cost of the solar system was further offset with a utility company rebate that is made available periodically. (SUN CLUB’s grant also provided funding for hydroponic sheds for the organization, which provide a low-energy, low-water environment for growing fresh produce year-round.)
My Possibilities selected Dallas-based Sunfinity Renewable Energy to design and install the 471-panel, 160 kW solar system on the Fischer Family School of Life Skills at the Campus for Higher Learning. The system is expected to offset 45 percent of the organization’s electricity needs and save more than $540,000 over its lifespan. The system will also offset carbon dioxide emissions produced by 6.3 million gallons/pounds of gas, diesel and coal burned or the greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to 11.8 million miles driven by passenger automobiles. Additional solar can be installed in the future to further offset the organization’s power needs as new buildings are constructed. My Possibilities currently serves more than 400 adults with disabilities onsite, weekly.
“Schools are often ideally suited for solar,” said John B. Billingsley, Chairman and CEO of Sunfinity Renewable Energy. “Their power needs match well with the sun’s peak hours, and of course, the savings can be redirected to expenses that benefit the children and the school community vs. utility bills.
“Texas schools are becoming more and more interested in solar energy, but to date, only a few schools in North Texashave implemented solar or renewable energy – it’s probably fewer than five schools. My Possibilities is on the cutting edge,” Billingsley added.
“My Possibilities is dedicated to providing exceptional educational and vocational opportunities for adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities. With many plans for the future, we will continue to meet the ambitious needs of our HIPsters* and expand the opportunities we provide,” said Michael Thomas, Executive Director. “Solar is an investment that will pay us back for decades to come – not to mention making our environment cleaner, safer and providing a learning tool for our HIPsters.”
*My Possibilities refers to their students as HIPsters – Hugely Important People.
ABOUT MY POSSIBILITIES
My Possibilities is a Plano-based for-cause 501c(3) organization that serves as the pioneering leader in vocational education for adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities throughout North Texas. To learn more, visit: mypossibilities.org
ABOUT SUNFINITY RENEWABLE ENERGY
Sunfinity Renewable Energy (www.sunfinityre.com) is headquartered in Dallas with full-service operations throughout California and Texas and active expansion into the Southwest, South Central and Northeast regions of the U.S. Sunfinity Renewable Energy offers complete residential, C&I (commercial and industrial), and utility-scale solar systems.