High-ranking delegation visits GP JOULE solar park in the US

A high-ranking delegation from Schleswig-Holstein visits the GP JOULE solar park at Smith Family Wines, Paraiso Vineyards Estate in the Sunshine State of California – vintners at the world-famous Paraiso Vineyards demonstrate how wine cultivation and renewable energies come together to form a winning combination.

Soledad/Reussenkoege, 12 September 2016 - Even outside Germany, GP JOULE is known as a company that sets new standards, with innovations in all areas of renewable energy generation and its varied applications. Which is why a high-ranking delegation from Schleswig-Holstein, led by head of the state chancellery Thomas Losse-Müller is visiting the solar park built by GP JOULE in the famous Paraiso Vineyards near San Francisco, alongside Google, Microsoft, Apple and other leading companies from Silicon Valley. Approximately 60 high-ranking representatives from politics, business and science in Schleswig-Holstein are in the delegation, whose visit is scheduled for 4-14 September 2016. GP JOULE is the only company from Schleswig-Holstein to be included by the delegation in the course of its fact-finding tour. 

Since September 2014 the Paraiso Vineyards solar park has been supplying 433 kWp of electricity to power the vineyard irrigation system as well as for the winery and pressing, air-conditioning and warehousing. What is special about this solar park is that GP JOULE was not only responsible for planning and installing the solar park's operations, but it also designed and developed the special plant system that optimises power generation for different applications and connects the various electricity meters, allowing vintners to take part in the Californian net metering program. 

"It is very impressive that the solution concepts developed by GP JOULE for the Californian net metering program are now also in demand for other similar projects in California. When it comes to the generation, enhancement and application of renewable energy forms, our companies in Schleswig-Holstein have good solutions. Their innovations demonstrate that it is possible to achieve sustainable added value on a regional level. GP JOULE has proven that know-how and competence from Schleswig-Holstein are also attractive to the North American market and that they have the potential to create a genuine top export," emphasises Thomas Losse-Müller, head of the state chancellery of Schleswig-Holstein. "In this way, our state is making a name for itself all over the world as a leading location for green future technologies". 

"We are very pleased to be able to present our activities in the USA in the form of this special solar project, since Smith Family Wines really shows how to make smart and optimum use of the sunshine state's immense potential with the help of renewable energies," adds GP JOULE founder and CEO, Ove Petersen. “Agricultural operations in particular, but also many other commercial users, are able to benefit extensively from implementing photovoltaics, by sustainably joining in the local energy revolution, becoming independent of energy price movements, and thus permanently reducing their electricity costs. The energy revolution has meanwhile taken off at full steam in the USA. As a local partner, GP JOULE can share its experience and great know-how, while at the same time returning new knowledge to Schleswig-Holstein and Germany." 

The net metering program enables vineyard operators to feed excess electricity that they are not able to consume at the time of its generation into the public electricity grid, and to use this quantity of power when it is needed, for instance at times of low generation. The net metering system basically works like a virtual 'electricity account', which can be employed as and when needed. In this way, it is possible to achieve an annual self-sufficiency rate of more than 95 per cent by means of solar-generated electricity. An additional component, the GP JOULE Phlegon® Mover, can be used to further optimise energy generation from the solar plant, resulting in additional yields of up to 20 per cent and even more consistent and calculable electricity production. The GP JOULE Phlegon® Mover is an intelligent tracking mount which enables photovoltaic plants in open areas to follow the movement of the sun in the sky.

"The example of Smith Family Wines makes it abundantly clear that renewable energy and wine cultivation & agriculture are a perfect match", stresses Petersen. "GP JOULE and the operators of Smith Family Wines are also linked by their extremely high quality standards, always in conjunction with the aim of using natural resources sparingly so as to create a unique product." For Jennifer Smith, associate and creative director of the vineyard, the connection of wine and sun power is a perfect partnership: “Our goal is to be the best stewards of our land. Adding solar with GP JOULE was the next step for our certified sustainable vineyards. The partnerships between our companies is reflected in the great wine we are producing“.

Just as GP JOULE stands for experience and enjoyment from renewable energies, Paraiso Vineyards Smith Family Wines grants wine connoisseurs a unique indulgence. GP JOULE evolved out of agriculture, and both Petersen and co-founder Heinrich Gärtner continue to be active in this field. As a company with its roots in agriculture, GP JOULE's incentive and aspiration have always been to combine smart innovations with sustainability. As an innovative company, GP JOULE is a pioneer, particularly in the north, in creating direct regional added value from 100% renewable energy in the local region. The focus of the company, which is based in North Friesland, is not only on energy generation but also on interlinking the electricity, heat and mobility segments with the aid of efficient power-to-gas plants, which convert electricity to hydrogen. This enhancement of renewable energies will lead to increased added value in Schleswig-Holstein and generate the next export hit in the USA.

Press contact:
Timo Bovi
Director Governmental Relations and Public Affairs
Tel.: +49 (0) 4671-6074235
Mobile: +49 (0) 177 8830622
E-mail: t.bovi(at)gp-joule.de

The GP JOULE Company: 
GP JOULE is a universal, innovative and authentic partner for all areas of renewable energies. Under the motto "TRUST YOUR ENERGY", the company has developed, planned and realised projects for the future-oriented use of sun, wind, biomass and energy storage since 2009. Based on a sense of respect and responsibility for mankind and the environment, GP Joule develops intelligent energy concepts and integrated solutions, thereby ensuring that the power turnaround becomes a genuine energy turnaround. The guiding principles of company founders and agricultural engineers Ove Petersen and Heinrich Gärtner include authenticity, trust, fair play, innovation and quality as well as the aim to contribute to 100% of energy consumption being drawn from renewable sources in the future. GP JOULE is thus able to offer investors a highly promising and profitable investment option. GP JOULE operates four sites in northern and southern Germany as well as two international sites in the USA and Canada.