31 January 2012
As the World Renewable Energy Forum (WREF 2012) heads for Denver, Colorado (US) 13-17 May, the Colorado Renewable Energy Society (CRES) prepares to show off its newly-opened Denver Sustainability Park.
CRES, a chapter of the American Solar Energy Society and one of the participating partners producing WREF 2012, created the Sustainability Park to demonstrate the future of renewable energy. The park occupies a 2.7-acre block in downtown Denver, and will display healthy practices and technologies to thousands, including WREF 2012 attendees.
Denver Housing Authority (DHA), which is taking steps to develop stronger communities through environmental health improvements, pedestrian-friendly planning and stable-energy measures, began consulting with CRES in 2010 about a new vision for Curtis Park. DHA wanted to develop a test bed for sustainable design with five core areas: renewable energy, green building, urban agriculture and smart water use, transportation, community outreach and education.
CRES is now installing solar and other renewable energy technologies at the park. Data obtained at the park will demonstrate each system’s financial viability, and can help DHA make smart decision in implementing renewable energy into new and existing developments. The park now has solar-powered pedestrian lights and LED street lights. Three urban farms began producing early last summer.
For the first time, the American Solar Energy Society’s National Solar Conference will be held under the same roof with the biennial World Renewable Energy Congress. The combined event is WREF 2012. The conference will draw prominent speakers and technical presentations from universities, renewable energy laboratories, installations and industries around the world. WREF 2012 will examine how renewable energy technologies address the world’s economic, environmental and security challenges at every scale, from off-grid villages to gigawatt power plants.