The town of Santa Coloma de Gramanet near Barcelona in Spain wants to do its part in fighting global warming. But the densely packed town - 124,000 people crammed into 1.5 square miles - doesn't have enough land to dedicate tracts exclusively to the wind farms or solar panels that could help ease residents' dependency on fossil fuel.
So the city council found the space required to install 462 solar panels in an unlikely spot. In the absence of flat expanses of land in the town, local politicians decided to use the local graveyard. The southward facing panels rest on top of the cemetery's mausoleums, where 57,000 people are buried. The $900,000 project, three years in the making, will reduce 62 tons of CO2 each year and provide enough alternative energy to power 60 homes for a year each.
City councillor Antoni Fogue told the Associated Press that it took a while for residents to warm up to the idea. â€œLet's say we heard things like, 'they're crazy. Who do they think they are? What a lack of respect!' "Fogue said in an interview. But residents who were opposed have since learned that the solar panels don't change the look of the cemetery.
The director of the cemetery said the solar panel installation is compatible with respect for the dead and their families. Generating clean energy, said Esteve Serret, was the â€œbest tributeâ€ the town could pay its ancestors.
Via BBC and the AP
written by Increase Page Rank, November 29, 2008
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