Operation Cool Shade

MEC is offering 2,100 trees for members to purchase during Operation Cool Shade. Photo by MEC

When members spend time outdoors in the summer heat, having shade to feel cooler is a hot commodity, or cool commodity in this case. Although temperatures are the same in the shade, people feel at least 10 degrees cooler. The same could be said about preventing direct sunlight into your home, which lowers the outside wall temperature.

Operation Cool Shade trees enhance the look of your home and yard while saving energy dollars. Shading your home can reduce cooling costs up to 20% in just a few years, and the energy not being consumed is also better for the environment. “There’s a reason why people park their cars in the shade. When the sun comes through the window it generates heat and raises the temperature in your home,” said Steve Bouman, energy management specialist with Mohave Electric Cooperative (MEC).

MEC is offering 2,100 trees for purchase by members for $9 each, including a complimentary LED bulb. Sales are limited to 4 trees per member.

Enjoy the convenience of phone order presales on September 11 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. by calling (928) 763-1100. Regular tree sales will begin on September 22 and continue through October 5 at MEC member service, located at 928 Hancock Road. Tree pick-up for Bullhead City is November 13 at a new location, Anderson Auto Group Fieldhouse. Tree pickup location for MEC’s eastern service area is November 20 at Pinion Pine Fire Department in Kingman.

MEC employees putting trees outsideAs with previous years, MEC employees have been working closely with the University of Arizona Mohave County Cooperative Extension of the Master Gardeners in Bullhead City to determine suitable trees for a desert environment. The shade trees chosen this year are rosewood, willow acacia, Chilean mesquite, and desert willow. The Bullhead City Master Gardeners will also be offering a workshop on how to plant your Operation Cool Shade trees and other desert-adapted plants on October 21, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Mohave County Library Bullhead City branch at 1170 Hancock Rd.

Those considering purchasing shade trees should create a landscaping plan. Ensure you have enough space to plant at least three trees so that they may provide enough shade to shield your home on the west, south, or east side. Before you plant, it is important that all members call Arizona 811 at (800) 782-5348 or go online at the Arizona 811 website to create a ticket. Arizona 811 will notify utility locators to mark the placement of underground utility wires and pipes where you plan to plant trees. Never plant trees where their growth will interfere with overhead power lines. A good rule to follow is, at maturity, the trunk and branches of trees should be at least 15 feet away from overhead power lines. In addition, be mindful to plant 15 feet from driveways, patios, sidewalks, and blocks walls.

For complete details on Operation Cool Shade, please visit our Operation Cool Shade page and stay tuned to MEC’s Facebook page for event updates.