“Sin City” Casinos Want to Use Renewable Energy 

wind turbines

If you want to make forward-looking decisions, save money in the long run, and make an active contribution to climate and environmental protection, you can’t avoid renewable or green energy. Every day more and more households are trying to use renewable energy. The regional and international playhouses are no exception. It is extremely important not only to use energy from renewable sources in a sensible and economical way but also to be climate-friendly.

Casinos, with luxurious lights and larger than life accommodation, are the real power guzzlers. The casinos from “Sin City” Las Vegas consume nearly 10% power of NV energy (the state energy provider) and now they are trying to move towards renewable energy sources. MGM Resorts has already started working 100 MW solar array to feed energy to its more than 12 properties in Las Vegas. 

The two other largest casino operators Wynn and Las Vegas Sands also want to use renewable energies in order to operate their properties such as casinos, hotels, and resorts much more consistently than before with green electricity. So, it is possible that after a few years when you will be betting on your poker hands, you will feel relieved that you are somehow contributing to the green energy by being in the casino that uses green energy. It is possible because the sunny desert state of Nevada has almost ideal conditions to make optimal use of all the powerful options for generating electricity with solar energy.

What Are the Obstacles?

However, the move towards a particularly environmentally friendly energy source is far more difficult than expected. The reason: NV Energy has so far insisted heatedly on compliance with all existing energy supply contracts.

The casinos currently consume and pay nearly 10% of the total energy sales of NV Energy. So, it is quite understandable, therefore, that there must be a conflict of interests almost inevitably because while the former energy supplier (NV Energy) has to plan its potential electricity sales over a longer period of time, implement it technically and keep suitable infrastructures and corresponding energy reserves available at all time, the casino companies want to use all potential opportunities of the free energy market as early and as quickly as possible.

To solve the problem, NV Energy and the Nevada Public Utility Commission (PUC), as a city advocacy group and regulatory authority, had already offered the energy change in 2015, but in return demanded that the casinos pay an exit fee more than USD 125 million.

Renewable Energy Ensures Investment Security for Casinos

Apparently, this large sum did not deter the most financially powerful casinos from their necessary step of investing fully in the use of solar energy. For example, MGM already paid its own financial contribution and lion’s share of the exit (87 million dollars) and invested almost simultaneously in an impressive own solar system. With a total output of up to 8.3 megawatts, it already supplies 1,340 single-family homes with electricity and covers almost a quarter of the total energy demand on-site. Wynn, as one of the other major “big players” in the casino business, has now completed its desired change and thus the separation from the energy monopolist NV Energy (exit amount: 17 million dollars).

Both casino giants are hoping for far-reaching benefits for the future-oriented orientation of their companies. Especially because the operation of the casinos will continue to be very energy-intensive and even small energy savings can already reduce costs absolutely effectively here. In addition, there is another important factor: more than 40 million travelers and visitors can see for themselves each year how powerful, safe, and comfortable the current state-of-the-art form of use of solar energy is. This is a positive image factor that should not be underestimated and which can bring lasting competitive advantages and puts the special strengths of renewable energies around the globe in the right light.

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