SunEdison, Inc. today announced it has signed a solar power purchase agreement with Stockton East Water District in Northern California. SunEdison plans to install 2.2MW of SunEdison solar panels on the water district's property. By going solar, the district expects to save more than $9.5 million on energy costs over the next 20 years and 20 million gallons of water annually.
"A SunEdison solar system is a fast and effective way for organizations to reduce their energy costs," said Sam Youneszadeh, SunEdison's regional general manager of its Western U.S. solar business. "And it's a great way to save water too – on average it takes more than four gallons of water to generate each kilowatt-hour of electricity in California. By going solar, we're able to reduce water use by 99 percent, saving approximately 20 million gallons of water each year. SunEdison has installed solar at more than 1,000 locations in the U.S., saving more than 20 billion gallons of water in the process."
With SunEdison's solar power purchase agreement, the water district will enjoy the benefits of solar energy without any up-front cost. SunEdison installs, owns, and operates each system while the district buys the solar electricity at lower rates than offered by their local utility.
"With no upfront costs and savings starting from day one, we couldn't be happier with SunEdison,'' said Scot Moody, Stockton East Water District's general manager. "We're expecting to save more than $9.5 million with this project. This is a great example of how we're looking at new initiatives to save money and be good stewards of the environment."
The solar systems are expected to generate enough energy to offset approximately 50 percent of the electricity used at the facility. That same amount of electricity can power 650 Californian homes a year. The system also avoids the emission of more than 50 million pounds of carbon dioxide over 20 years—the equivalent of taking around 5,000 cars off the road.
SunEdison intends to complete the solar system in 2016. Operation and maintenance of the solar systems will be performed by SunEdison Services.