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News Walt Disney World to boost its solar power capacity with two new 75MW solar facilities in 2023

hpyhnt 1000

Well-Known Member
Maybe they'll put these new solar installations above the surface parking lots rather than clearing more green space. Solar is great, but let's be smarter about where we put it! Literally hundreds of acres of cleared land across the resort basically ready to go, with the added benefit of keeping everyone's cars cooler.

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JoeCamel

Well-Known Member
Maybe they'll put these new solar installations above the surface parking lots rather than clearing more green space. Solar is great, but let's be smarter about where we put it! Literally hundreds of acres of cleared land across the resort basically ready to go, with the added benefit of keeping everyone's cars cooler.

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People can't park now, adding all the supports is asking for problems. Would be nice to have shade though
 

Bob Harlem

Well-Known Member
Maybe they'll put these new solar installations above the surface parking lots rather than clearing more green space. Solar is great, but let's be smarter about where we put it! Literally hundreds of acres of cleared land across the resort basically ready to go, with the added benefit of keeping everyone's cars cooler.

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Legoland Florida has this exact setup, at least for the "premium" parking.
 

DisneyCane

Well-Known Member
People can't park now, adding all the supports is asking for problems. Would be nice to have shade though
That's the problem. They'd spend so much on repairs that it would make the project uneconomical. Although, I guess people manage to park in the DS garages without too much crashing into the supports.
 

MrPromey

Well-Known Member
That's the problem. They'd spend so much on repairs that it would make the project uneconomical. Although, I guess people manage to park in the DS garages without too much crashing into the supports.
I don't think people running into the support structures would be a major concern with these but putting them in the existing parking lots would come with a number of challenges which are probably preventing it, for now, anyway.

• Cost - obviously, the setup for the car cover version is way heavier on hardware than the empty field version.
• Compatibility - would the parking lots need to be totally reconfigured to have these set up at the angles needed to collect light?
• Construction - they'd have to reduce available parking while installing these so they'd have to go slow which would also add to cost.

It's cheaper and easier to chop down trees. That flies directly in the face of their earth day messages about all of this but it's the reality of how they actually look at things.

This is the company that did away with plastic straws while simultaneously starting a sponsor agreement that had them giving out Ziplock bags for a single use, after all.

They don't really care about any of it. They just want those of us who care to think they do. In fact, I'm sure they're either saving or getting money out of all of this with land leased to the power companies and/or through state sponsored incentives.

Another thing I noticed in the video is that the farm panels appear to rotate during the course of the day to track sunlight from east to west. I'm sure there are some but I've never seen the carport type anywhere do this which might also make them less efficient on top of being more expensive - that's not how Disney rolls, these days.
 
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FerretAfros

Well-Known Member
For what it's worth, DLP is currently in the process of installing solar panels on top of its main parking lot

Logistically, if a large-scale solar installation above theme park parking can be a worthwhile investment with France's dreary weather, there's no reason it couldn't also be successful in the Sunshine State. The rows of cars in the MK and Epcot lots are already favorably aligned for long spans of south-facing panels; the existing layouts at DAK and Studios are slightly trickier with their north-south rows,

Additionally, HKDL uses several of its flat rooftops within the park and backstage for solar panels. Other than the former Universe of Energy (which may or may not have solar incorporated into its new design), I don't believe any WDW structures have solar roofs. There are no shortage of flat-roofed buildings at each of the parks, hotels, and other support facilities that could easily accommodate solar panels without infringing on guest sightlines.

I know that WDW has the "blessing of size" to allow whatever they want, but there's really no justification for clear-cutting a forest to install a solar farm.
 

castlecake2.0

Well-Known Member
WWOS, the maingate office complex, celebration offices and rooftops, MK cast parking, lots of good options, but maybe not big enough for what they want. They purchased thousands of acres around celebration lately maybe it could go there, or flamingo crossing area ?
 

MrPromey

Well-Known Member
For what it's worth, DLP is currently in the process of installing solar panels on top of its main parking lot

Logistically, if a large-scale solar installation above theme park parking can be a worthwhile investment with France's dreary weather, there's no reason it couldn't also be successful in the Sunshine State. The rows of cars in the MK and Epcot lots are already favorably aligned for long spans of south-facing panels; the existing layouts at DAK and Studios are slightly trickier with their north-south rows,

Additionally, HKDL uses several of its flat rooftops within the park and backstage for solar panels. Other than the former Universe of Energy (which may or may not have solar incorporated into its new design), I don't believe any WDW structures have solar roofs. There are no shortage of flat-roofed buildings at each of the parks, hotels, and other support facilities that could easily accommodate solar panels without infringing on guest sightlines.

I know that WDW has the "blessing of size" to allow whatever they want, but there's really no justification for clear-cutting a forest to install a solar farm.

I'm not disagreeing with your stance but if you think there is no justification for the approach they're taking, why do you think they're doing it that way?
 

FerretAfros

Well-Known Member
I'm not disagreeing with your stance but if you think there is no justification for the approach they're taking, why do you think they're doing it that way?
Like you said in your earlier post, it’s cheaper and easier to have dedicated facilities for each use.

If solar panels are being built on their own, their supports don’t need to be tall enough for a vehicle to fit under, or strong enough to withstand a vehicle impact. Building structures don’t need to be modified to support the additional roof load. Maintenance of the solar panels doesn’t have to be coordinated with the operations of a theme park, and maintenance of the park facilities doesn’t have to be coordinated with the solar company. It’s just easier and cheaper for everybody.

This is a business decision, to monetize land that wouldn’t otherwise provide any direct value (though there is plenty to be said for the value provided by the visual and physical separation of the various parts of WDW, when compared to Disney’s other resorts). While I don’t necessarily agree with that logic, I certainly understand it.

But to announce it on Earth Day, as some sort of environmentally friendly initiative, is a little disingenuous when it results in unnecessary deforestation of natural areas. Having separate facilities only furthers the sprawl that got us into this mess in the first place, from destroying natural habitats, to disrupting stormwater runoff, to additional transportation costs and emissions to reach far-flung areas.

Jiminy Cricket can remind us to reduce, reuse, and recycle, but that only does so much good if Disney has already paved over the land. It’s exactly what the ironically self-unaware Circle of Life movie at the Land pavilion preached to its audiences, with the destruction of natural wetlands to build a vacation resort causing environmental impacts that the narrow-focused developer didn’t foresee.

Granted, we still don’t know for sure yet where these new solar panels are going, and they may very well be placed above existing impermeable surfaces around the resort. But if recent experience is any indicator, they’re going to take the easiest approach to make a quick buck, whether that is what’s best for the environment or not
 

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