Citizens State Bank converts to solar

The Ridgway branch of Citizens State Bank recently installed solar panels with the help of Alternative Power Enterprises. With the panels in place, the branch now runs on 100 percent solar power.

Courtesy photo

by Dalton Carver

After receiving estimates from local energy company Alternative Power Enterprises, the Ridgway branch of Citizens State Bank recently converted their operation to run on 100 percent solar power. With the conversion, a CSB representative said, the branch is generating more energy than is being used.
“Recognizing our natural setting and environments, it was kind of a no-brainer,” said Travis Cossit, CSB vice president of operations. “We realized we could preserve the beauty around us and continue to support our community and we were able to partner with a local vendor from Ridgway, who was able to do the work.”
Cossitt said Leif Juell, owner of Alternative Power Enterprises, came to the Ridgway branch about eight weeks ago to propose alternative power opportunities, including partial and fully renewable options. Cossitt said fully renewable was chosen as the best way to go.
Shortly after, panels were installed and are operating on CSB Ridgway’s roof.  As well as the environmental benefits, Cossit said, the conversion was economically beneficial.
“With rebates at the local, state and national level, it was beneficial. It made economic sense to do it,” said Cossitt. “We’re supporting the community with APE and preserving the natural beauty we’re around, but economically, it made sense as well.”
Since flipping the ‘On’ switch, Cossitt said, the transition to operating fully on solar power has been seamless.
“You can imagine in a banking environment the stability of our systems is a pretty core component and that was something we really looked at,” he said. “We felt comfortable with the conversion and everything’s been going great. We’ve noticed no difference, frankly, from a reliability standpoint.”
With success found at the Ridgway branch, Citizens State Bank is now looking at renewable options at its other branches in Ouray, Silverton and Naturita. Although there may be limitations considering the amount of sun those locations receive, Cossitt said options are being considered.
“We are looking for ways to continue to make things more renewable,” he said. “We have a recycling plan we’ve implemented in Ridgway and Ouray.”
The Ridgway branch of Citizens State Bank is located at 145 Sherman St. For more information on the bank, visit or call 970-626-5462.