If you’re at all familiar with Ridge Vineyards, you’re probably aware of Lytton Springs. You’ve probably tasted the wine. You may have even made the journey to Sonoma, and enjoyed a bit of our Healdsburg hospitality.
And you may even know about the building itself; how it was built, and to what purpose.
If not, you can read some detailed information here. If you follow the link, what you’ll discover is a document with the following as its title: “Ridge/Lytton Springs: An Ecologically-Friendly Building Made Of Straw.” And in reading the document, what you’ll learn about is the drive to renovate Lytton Springs in such a fashion as to utilize as many environmentally friendly techniques as possible. Amongst them, building the structure with rice straw bales, finishing the walls with “breathing” earthen plaster, relying on recycled lumber, and our night-air cooling system.
Foremost amongst the eco-friendly attributes are the solar panels, which provide electrical power for the entire facility, including both the winery, and the tasting room.
Do they really work? Does solar power really work?
This is, of course, one of the great questions of our age.
I think at this point, we’re all pretty aware of our collective need to find new ways to power our world. Whether it’s concerns about global warming, or prices at the pump that get your worried, one way or another, you’re worried. We’re all worried.
But what does one do? Does one wind? Does one frack? How about cap & trade?
At Lytton Springs, we solar.
And judging by the 2011 report we just received from our provider partner, SunPower Energy Management Services, we solar to pretty darn good effect.
In 2011, our systems produced 96,433 kWh, or 118% of the energy predicted during the year based on measured weather.*
Which means that, cumulatively since the system was installed/activated:
Our renewable energy production has helped avoid the release of 306 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, which is the equivalent of 86 acres of forest saved, or of not driving 764,926 miles.*
Which means that, every time you visit Lytton Springs, The Lorax blesses you for merit accrued.
For more information about visiting Lytton Springs, please click here.
*Source: SunPower Energy Management Services, Annual System Performance Update