Rumsey Hall School in Washington is now completing the installation of a solar panel system on the roof of its Lufkin Rink.

The 207kW SunPower photovoltaic (PV) system is the largest installation of energy-harnessing solar panels at any private school in the state.

The panels will benefit the entire campus, bringing an immediate cost savings to the school.

Demonstrating a continued commitment to a sustainable environment, Rumsey Hall initiated the project as part of the planning and building of the 35,211-square-foot Lufkin Rink, which was completed in December 2008 and is now home to Rumsey's ice hockey teams.

"This project will provide the school community with a daily reminder of the importance of seeking alternative energy sources," said Rumsey Hall's Headmaster, Thomas W. Farmen.

The solar installation was made possible, in part, by a grant of $716,127 from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF), which defrayed more than half of the total cost of the system.

CCEF offers financial incentives to stimulate the development and use of clean energy.

The balance of the cost was subsidized by private gifts and a restricted pledge from members of the school's Board of Trustees.

Alteris Renewables, a leading supplier of solar panel systems in the Northeast, installed the net-metered system on the south facing roof of the Lufkin Rink to optimize the solar exposure.

The school's utility bills are expected to be cut an estimated $30,000. Over the life of the system, 6,300,500 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions should be avoided; the environmental benefit would be akin to planting 30,000 trees.