FRAMINGHAM – Orange Unified School District (OUSD) and Ameresco, Inc., announced yesterday, July 10, construction will begin on a total of 2.1 megawatts of solar energy.
This is the first solar project in Orange Unified’s history.
The project consists of a combination of ground-mounted and shade canopies at eight sites, generating 3,552,716 million kWh of renewable electricity its first year of operation – reducing carbon emissions by an estimated 2,512 metric tons.
This is the annual equivalent to 533 passenger cars driven for one year.
“The ability to tap into on-site solar energy makes our schools less reliant on the grid and dramatically reduces our carbon footprint,” said OUSD Energy Manager Andrew Durrett. “Transitioning to renewable energy sources such as solar is a cornerstone of this district’s long-term sustainability plan.”
”Under the power purchase agreement approved by the Board of Education, Ameresco will be responsible for all costs including the design, construction, operation, and ongoing maintenance of the solar panels,” added Assistant Superintendent of Business Services David Rivera. “In today’s dollars, the anticipated savings in utility costs to be realized by this agreement is projected at $5.3 million, which has been confirmed by an independent third-party energy specialist.”
“OUSD has a proven track record of balancing environmental stewardship and fiscal responsibility. This project is yet another example of the District’s innovative leadership to continuously improve the learning environment for students,” said Ameresco Vice President Bob Georgeoff.
“By connecting the district’s eight solar photovoltaic systems to the local electric utility, Orange Unified School District will be able to monetize its new energy assets and reinvest proceeds back into our classrooms for our well deserving students,” stated Superintendent of Schools Gunn Marie Hansen, Ph.D.
The Orange Unified School District educates approximately 28,000 students in the Cities of Orange, Villa Park, Anaheim, Garden Grove, Santa Ana, and unincorporated county areas. The school district, founded in 1953, encompasses 108 square miles.
Founded in 2000, Ameresco, Inc. is an independent provider of comprehensive services, energy efficiency, infrastructure upgrades, asset sustainability and renewable energy solutions for businesses and organizations throughout North America and Europe. Ameresco’s sustainability services include upgrades to a facility’s energy infrastructure and the development, construction and operation of renewable energy plants. Ameresco has successfully completed energy saving, environmentally responsible projects with Federal, state and local governments, healthcare and educational institutions, housing authorities, and commercial and industrial customers. With its corporate headquarters in Framingham, Ameresco has more than 1,000 employees providing local expertise in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
Above was a press release submitted to SOURCE.