Solar Update: California’s Yuba County, University of Virgin Islands
Yuba County, Calif., and Chevron Energy Solutions will flip the switch on the county government’s first solar power installation. The 1 MW installation at two sites, together with a set of energy efficiency measures, will reduce the county’s annual energy purchases by 50 percent. The project’s energy efficiency improvements include lighting at 10 county buildings and HVAC upgrades. Water retrofits are expected to reduce Yuba County’s water use by close to 35 percent. Overall, the project is expected to save the county $500,000 in its first year and almost $16 million over its life. Chevron Energy Solutions will design and build the project, and will maintain and guarantee its performance and production for 20 years.
The University of the Virgin Islands signed a power purchase agreement with New Generation Power, which will install solar PV systems on the school’s two campuses. The systems will generate up to 3 MW: about 1.8 MW on the St. Thomas campus and 1.2 MW on the St. Croix campus, reports the Virgin Islands Daily News. Illinois-headquartered New Generation Power will maintain the systems for 20 years and sell the power to the university, resulting in an estimated $900,000 to $1 million cost savings annually. The solar systems will generate about half the campuses energy needs. Any excess power will be fed to the V.I. Water and Power Authority’s grid under terms still being negotiated. New Generation Power is also providing the university with portable renewable energy labs and solar-powered charging stations for electric vehicles and is helping the school offer courses in renewable energy.
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