DISCOVERY KINGDOM BECOMES WEST COAST’S FIRST SOLAR-POWERED THEME PARK

 BY GABRIELLE

Six Flags’ Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, California, has become the first theme park on the West Coast to be powered by renewable energy.

Working in partnership with Borrego Solar Systems and sPower, the official switch to solar power at Discovery Kingdom was made during a special event to mark the theme park’s 12th Holiday in the Park.

The annual Holiday in the Park features festive F&B and themed entertainment, as well as visitors being able to ride of Six Flags’ iconic rides, rollercoasters and attractions.

Bob Sampayan, mayor of Vallejo, turned on a giant switch at the event, which lit up millions of Christmas lights powered by solar energy.

80% of the theme park is now powered by a 7.5-megawatt solar carport, which is one of the largest solar carports in the United States. The solar carport installation will create 11.9 million kilowatt hours of energy every year, offsetting around 8,400 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually.

Tom Iven, senior vice president of the US park operations, said: “We are thrilled to be introducing the nation’s first solar powered Holiday in the Park event.

“The marvellous wonder of this special time of year truly comes alive in our parks with a smorgasbord of seasonal delights to see and experience.”

SOLAR ENERGY PLANT TO BE INSTALLED AT PORTAVENTURA WORLD

 BY GABRIELLE

Alarge solar energy plant is being installed at PortAventura World in Spain. The 100,000 sq.mt. project, which will supply energy to the whole of the theme park, will open in spring 2020.

The plant will comprise of 22,000 modules and will be Europe’s largest self-consumption photovoltaic plant. The project will cost $6 million and will have an installed capacity of 8.5 MWp.

As well as supplying the energy required for the theme park, the solar energy plant will power PortAventura World’s waterpark and leisure complex.

Occupying a site the size of 14 football pitches, the plant will prevent around 4,000 tonnes of CO2 being released into the atmosphere every year.

Fernando Alcecoa, managing director at PortAventura World, said: “The solar park is a project that acts as a lever to promote change towards a more sustainable and responsible world.

“This vision allows us to remain at the forefront and continue to be leaders in sustainability amongst international tourist destinations.”

Earlier this year, the popular theme park in Salou opened its first carbon-neutral hotel. The 150 room Colorado Creek is part of the resort’s efforts to minimise its carbon footprint.

SIX FLAGS GREAT ADVENTURE BECOMES ONE OF THE WORLD’S FIRST SOLAR-POWERED THEME PARKS

 BY GABRIELLE

Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, New Jersey has become one of the first theme parks in the world to operate on solar power.

Six Flags, together with its sustainable energy partner, KDC Solar, have completed the joint 23.5-megawatt solar energy project.

The ambitious solar project at Great Adventure comprises of 11MW of solar carports, 12.5MW of solar panels across 40 acres and a net metering system which enables Six Flags to produce its own green energy and export power to the grid to provide homes and businesses in the vicinity with energy.

Another key eco feature of the project is the preservation of over 200 acres of wetlands and forests. The solar facility will mean Great Adventure will witness a dramatic reduction in its reliance on fossil fuels.

John Winkler, president of Six Flags Great Adventure Park, said the resort was continually looking for new ways to operate more efficiently and become commendable stewards of the environment.

“This is a thrilling day for our company. The project represents a giant step towards becoming a net-zero carbon facility,” Winkler commented.

“Clean energy is right for the environment and our future, and we look forward to decades of environmental stewardship with our partner, KDC Solar,” he added.

Alan Epstein, president and CEO of KDC Solar, said:

“Six Flags demonstrated its unwavering commitment to clean, solar power by its steadfast partnership with us throughout this process.

“This groundbreaking project perfectly aligns with both Governor Murphy and the New Jersey Senate and Assembly’s support of renewable solar energy. We look forward to a long-continued partnership with Six Flags Great Adventure,” Epstein added.