The Indian Wells Valley Water District (IWVWD) in California and OpTerra Energy Services, a subsidiary of energy services corporation ENGIE, have marked the start of a solar and energy-efficiency project program that is expected to yield $9.38 million in net savings over the life of the program.
According to OpTerra, the program scope includes the installation of 2.08 MW of solar PV projects across five water well sites and the district administrative office. The projects at the water well sites will be ground-mounted, fixed-tilt solar PV systems, and OpTerra plans to construct a solar carport system at the district office.
To enhance building efficiency and occupant comfort inside of district facilities, OpTerra says it will also manage the installation of new LED lighting and the replacement of aging HVAC units at the district office. In addition to improving temperature control and the quality of lighting in facilities, these upgrades contribute to hedging against rising energy costs from year to year, according to the company.
“Our district has been exploring the feasibility of solar energy for quite some time,” said Don Zdeba, general manager of IWVWD. “We are very pleased that the economics of a solar project in partnership with OpTerra were favorable and that we were able to include a comprehensive energy-efficiency component to the project.”
The solar systems are planned to go online by summer 2017, and overall, the program is expected to reduce the district’s electricity spending by approximately 63%.