SunPower Corp. will be installing solar power systems on six San Ramon Valley Schools, generating more than 3 megawatts. The contract has been approved by the San Ramon Valley Unified School District board of education.
SunPower intends to partner with the district for offering lesson plans on energy as well. The company plans to use these systems as educational tools, helping students better understand solar power. The six schools are Gale Ranch Middle School, Diablo Vista Middle School, Monte Vista High School, Dougherty Valley High School, California High School and San Ramon Valley High School.
The purchase of the solar systems will be funded using Qualified School Construction Bonds (QSCBs) authorized by the federal government through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). The solar power generated is likely to cut nearly 80 percent of the electricity costs at each of the schools, resulting in a total savings in excess of $2 million per year.
The solar power systems will use SunPower E-Series solar panels. The high efficiency panels will be produced at SunPower's Milpitas facility. Construction of the systems is likely to be completed by next year-end.
SunPower has over 500 solar power systems under contract or in operation at present. The company’s customers in California include the Los Angeles Unified School District, Mendocino College and University of California, Merced.