St. Vrain Valley Schools Benefit from On-Site Renewable Energy
Erie High School Solar Array
As a winner of the 2011 ReNew Our Schools energy competition hosted by the Center for Resource Conservation, Erie High implemented solar energy with the $25,000 award money. There are approximately 48 panels mounted on the roof of the cafeteria. The 10kW solar energy system generates about 13,400 kilowatt-hours of electricity on an annual basis.
Lyons Middle Senior School Solar Array
In 2009 Poudre Valley REA and The Center for ReSource Conservation came together to install a solar PV array at the Lyons Middle/Senior High School in Boulder County.
The project is part of the Go Green! Initiative and is a key component of the Lyons Renew Our Schools program. Major funding for the 21kW solar energy system was provided by the CRC through a StEPP Foundation grant that also provides for water conservation, recycling and possible bio-diesel fuel for the school system’s buses.
Poudre Valley REA contributed $50,000 toward the project and, in return, received the Renewable Energy Credits from the new array. Poudre Valley has also participated actively in the Go Green! educational outreach program that provides school-based curriculum with an emphasis on energy conservation.
The new solar panels provide an estimated 4% of the school district’s electricity consumption and result in direct savings of $3,000 per year. It also serves as a hands-on learning tool for both students and the community at large.
Solar system benefits:
- Recurring benefits every year for 30+ years:
- Carbon Emission Reduction: 53,236 lbs/year
- Vehicle Mile Reduction Equivalent: 58,230 miles/year
- Equivalent # of Trees Planted: 2,048 trees
Westview Middle School Solar Array
With the $20,000 ReNew Our Schools award money, Westview Middle School decided to fund a 6.76kW solar array. There are 26 260W panels in total. Custom Solar installed the panels in spring of 2015. The panels save the equivalent of 5.6 acres of forests in the U.S. each year or 7,303 pounds of coal prevented from being burned each year.
Red Hawk Elementary
350 KW ground mounted array
Solar generation: 546,000 kWh/year
95% of the school’s electricity needs
Average savings per year = $40,000
Erie Middle School
365 KW rooftop system
Solar generation: 525,000 kWh/year
72% of the school’s electricity needs
Average savings per year = $52,000
Niwot High School
500 KW rooftop system
Solar generation: 701,000 kWh/year
62% of the school’s electricity needs
Average savings per year = $75,000