The roof of our ‘Havenloods’ has been sparkling in the sunlight for the past week; one week ago, we installed 334 solar panels to generate 87,000kWh annually, which is enough for us to be able to organise energy-neutral events.
In collaboration with the energy collective of Lage Weide industrial zone, DeFabrique has explored the various options. ‘The number of recommended panels was lower than the number we actually installed; we were eager to generate more power, rather than less,’ says director Allart van Eck.
“We did the calculations based on 950 hours of full load (the hours in which the panels are functioning optimally). This should be enough to cover our daily energy consumption. We still use green power for peaks in the evenings though, because there is no battery big enough to deal with those just yet,’ says Van Eck.
The investment in solar panels was made primarily for environmental reasons. ‘Financially speaking, the return on investment isn’t that great; less than five percent,’ says Van Eck. ‘But on the other hand, having solar panels makes your company much more independent during economic crises; it’s great not to have an energy bill to pay in leaner years. And more than anything, it helps make our company a bit more economically friendly.’