Lexmark, a global imaging and IoT solutions leader, today broke ground on a two-megawatt solar array that will bring renewable energy to its global headquarters in Lexington, Kentucky. Kentucky Lieutenant Governor Jacqueline Coleman, Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton, Executive Director of the Kentucky Office of Energy Policy Kenya Stump, and project partners Seth Parker from Melink and Kenny Cook from Schneider Electric participated in a ground-breaking event at the site today.
The solar array is expected to produce more than 3.3 million kilowatt hours (kWh) in its first year of operation, equivalent to avoiding the greenhouse gas emissions from nearly six million miles driven by an average passenger vehicle. Once operational in the spring of 2023, the solar array is expected to address approximately 10 percent of Lexmark headquarters’ electric consumption.
“Lexmark has committed to achieving carbon neutrality across all our operations by 2035,” said Allen Waugerman, President and CEO, Lexmark. “Renewable energy will help us achieve that goal, and we are pleased to break ground on construction of a two-megawatt solar array at our Lexington headquarters. We appreciate the tremendous support from state officials, which helped make it possible.”
“Last year, we announced Kentucky’s energy strategy for a transitioning energy landscape,” said Lt. Kentucky Governor Jacqueline Coleman, who took part in today’s event. “Known as KYE3 – which stands for energy, environment, and economic development – our long-term strategic vision for Kentucky is an energy strategy wrapped in economic development and focused on resilience. Lexmark is one company embodying the essence of KYE3. Congratulations on the ground-breaking of your solar array.”
Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet Secretary Rebecca Goodman noted the teamwork required to make this project possible. “This project and the collaborative effort between the cabinet and Lexmark is an excellent example of what we can achieve as Team Kentucky,” Sec. Goodman said. “Lexmark is to be commended for their efforts to take an idle, inoperative piece of property and redevelop it for positive use for the community.”
In addition to its environmental benefits, the Lexmark solar array project will provide a STEM education opportunity for local schools. Student groups will tour an adjacent (to be constructed) greenspace with walking trails, a wildlife habitat, butterfly garden and pollinator flower garden. Power generation analytics will be displayed in the company’s customer engagement center.
“This project yet again shows that Lexmark is a great corporate citizen. Through volunteerism and other community investments, Lexmark employees contribute to improving Lexington,” said Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton. “This is one of several projects Lexmark has sponsored to improve our environment. The STEM education opportunities associated with this project will benefit our students for years to come.”
Lexmark is working with project developer Melink to install the solar array and First Solar to manufacture the solar panels. Schneider Electric advised Lexmark, assisting the company in project selection and negotiations.
“Lexmark and Schneider Electric are two global sustainability leaders with a large presence in Kentucky,” said Steve Wilhite, President Sustainability Business, Schneider Electric. “We’re proud of the progress we’ve seen in the state – and we’re thrilled to be part of Lexmark’s onsite solar array project.”