SolarWorld to bring 500 kW of carport solar power to four Californian parks


Four public parks in Thousand Oaks, California, are set to receive 537 kW of solar-power generation capacity with the imminent installation by SolarWorld of four solar carports.??It is estimated that the carports will generate a total of 17,300,000 kW-hours of clean energy, saving millions of dollars over 25 years for the Conejo Recreation and Parks District (CRPD), which owns and operates the parks.

The partnership between CRPD, SolarWorld and Sustainable Power Group (sPower) – a development firm that specialises in renewable energy – sees SolarWorld’s engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) division oversee all phases of the project’s design, construction and procurement. It has been jointly financed by sPower and SolarWorld via a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA).

The deal denotes that SolarWorld will construct, install, maintain and operate the carports, with CRPD purchasing energy from SolarWorld and sPower at a rate far below local utility provider costs. The local government unit anticipates that the project will save it an estimated $3.4 million over the duration of the PPA.

"With this project, SolarWorld brings together its high-quality solar technology and top-flight engineering and construction talent with sPower’s financing capacity to help CRPD meet its fiscal and sustainability goals," said SolarWorld Americas’ president, Kevin Kilkelly. "The project also highlights a growing trend among U.S. park districts. Long-time stewards of the environment, these organizations understand that solar power can also play a role in financial stewardship."

The carports will be constructed as solar canopies providing covered parking for visitors at the following four parks: Borchard Community Park, Dos Vientos Community Park, Thousand Oaks Community Park, and Conejo Creek South Park. Their output will range from 71 kW to almost 170 kW, and each will feature SolarWorld’s high-performance, 270-watt solar panels.??

"We are excited to start this project," said CRPD’s administrator for parks and planning, Tom Hare. "In addition to wanting to secure cost savings, we feel it is important that CRPD promote energy efficiency. We were pleased that we could accomplish these goals with SolarWorld, a company that has been manufacturing and designing solar systems in our community for more than 35 years."