BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — Maumee Assembly Stamping (MAS) is making a significant investment into green technology with the addition of a solar panel system.
Owner Stan Chlebowski, who purchased the 800,000-square-foot plant in 2009, said that the solar panel system will reduce the company’s carbon footprint and save money.
“I’m in the solar business and I started putting figures together and it made sense,” he said. “Solar is hot today and solar panels are made so much better today.”
MAS produces components for a variety of industries, including automobiles, trucks, electric cars and battery storage containers. It also leases warehouse space for items that are railed in and transloaded out and it stores insulation products that are inventoried and managed by MAS personnel.
Mr. Chlebowski plans to invest approximately $4.5 million into the solar panel project and will be eligible for a Federal Green Energy tax credit.
The new system is expected to save the company up to 30 percent on its monthly utility bill. Mr. Chlebowski hopes to have it paid off in 6-1/2 to seven years.
First Solar, an American photovoltaic (PV) manufacturer located in Perrysburg, will supply the panels, which come with a 25-year warranty. They will be installed on the building’s rooftop as well as on areas along the front and back of the building. The roof and ground systems will each cover 220,000 square feet of space.
“We’re making sure we’re getting panels from a local company. I live here – I want to do as much as I can locally,” Mr. Chlebowski said.
U.S. Utility, a company that Mr. Chlebowski also owns, will install the panels. The project should be completed by April 2020. U.S. Utility has been a solar array installer for many years with completed projects in multiple states, he said.
A second phase of the project includes using Tesla powerpacks to store the energy on the days that the plant is shut down. The solar panel initiative is also expected to expand to other locations in Northwest Ohio, he said.