Washington Gas Energy Systems, Inc. today announced the completion of two solar projects that will generate renewable energy for Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, Calif. and Corcoran Unified School District in Corcoran, Calif.
The company will hold two separate ribbon cutting ceremonies this week to celebrate the completion of the solar arrays. Both facilities will be owned and operated by Washington Gas Energy Systems under 20-year power purchase agreements. Washington Gas Energy Systems is a subsidiary of WGL which offers a diverse set of energy sources including natural gas, wind, and solar as well as a range of energy solutions – generation, storage, transportation, distribution, supply, and efficiency – which serve customers in more than 25 states.
“Dedication to pursuing renewable energy options set Western University and Corcoran Unified School District apart as forward-thinking organizations focused on reducing their environmental footprints,” said Sanjiv Mahan, chief operating officer of Washington Gas Energy Systems. “We are committed to working with educational organizations across the country on projects like these and are eager to maintain this positive trend with other institutions. These projects alone will reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking 476 cars off the road each year.”
The solar array at Western University will be unveiled at an event held at the school today. The 672-kilowatt, campus-based project consists of a roof-mounted system composed of 2,688 solar panels affixed to three buildings, and a carport system with solar panels located at one of the parking areas. It is expected to generate approximately 1,110 megawatt hours of solar energy per year. Green Energy Partners developed the project; Conergy managed engineering, procurement and construction.
“Western University welcomes this opportunity to help the environment, reduce the impact of our operations, and lower our electrical costs,” said Thomas G. Fox, the university’s senior vice president. “Solar panels offer a simple solution, one that makes a strong statement about the importance of a greener planet for a healthier life.”
Corcoran Unified School District will unveil its 1,269-kilowatt solar project in a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday. The solar array consists of 4,422 solar panels that span seven sites throughout the school district, including ground-mounted and carport systems at Bret Harte Elementary, the Corcoran Administration Building, Corcoran High School, Fremont School, John Muir School, The Learning Center and Mark Twain School. The project is expected to produce 2,125 megawatt hours of solar energy per year, which will cover approximately 88 percent of the school district’s electricity needs. The project was developed by AMSOLAR and was engineered and installed by Conergy. TerraVerde Renewable Partners acted as the consultant for the district.
“Corcoran Unified School District has become known as a district that leads in technology,” said Rich Merlo, superintendent of Corcoran Unified School District. “This solar project is an example of how using technology can improve our lives and provide opportunities for people, just as we in the district have made a commitment to everything conceivable to use modern technology to open the possibilities for our students and community!”
Each project is expected to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions produced by the schools. The Western University array is expected to reduce emissions equivalent to recycling 293 tons of waste instead of sending it to a landfill each year.
“This solar project will result in a significant cost savings for Western University over the next 20 years, allowing the school to focus funds on other initiatives,” said William DePhillipo, founder of Green Energy Partners. “Predictable energy rates coupled with a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions makes this an example of the viability of renewable energy for other universities across the country.”
The Corcoran Unified School District project will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking 312 passenger cars off the road each year.
“One of the great things about working with a District like Corcoran is its commitment to new technology, in both the classroom and in improving operations,” said Dr. Rick Brown, president of TerraVerde Partners. “With our help, the District took a very sophisticated approach to evaluating the costs and benefits of new technologies, and an expert-managed competitive bid process in securing the best possible market pricing for their solar project.”