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Castlegar gets grant for solar project

City of Castlegar
By City of Castlegar
April 2nd, 2019

The City of Castlegar has received a $65,000 grant from the Columbia Basin Trust that will help the community move toward energy efficiency and self-reliant community energy generation objectives contained in its Official Community Plan.

The grant will enable completion of a $100,000 project to place solar panels on the roof of City Hall. The City will contribute $10,750 to the project. BC Solar Now – an organization with a mandate to engage Canadians in a global shift to renewable energy via creation of opportunities for people to see and experience solar power first hand – will contribute $25,000 in capital funding to the project along with project planning and engineering.

“We are a dynamic community that is always looking for creative infrastructure and energy solutions,” says Mayor Bruno Tassone. “As solar panel costs continue to fall and C02 emissions reduction becomes standard business practice, we can play a leadership role in incorporating and demonstrating technology, while contributing to a better long-term financial bottom line for the City.”

The planned 30kW system will create annual net revenue (cost savings) estimated at $2,700 annually, generating a 35-year rate of return (4 years for the City’s contribution).

Castlegar’s Official Community Plan supports expanded municipal facility energy efficiency, and movement toward self-reliant community energy needs and alternative energy generation – including solar, geo-thermal, micro-hydro, bio-fuels, and wind. The project builds on City successes in municipal facility energy efficiency, including energy retrofits encompassing building envelopes, alternate heating, lighting, and mechanical equipment. Further energy generation opportunities for municipal buildings will be explored.

While solar energy accounts for a fraction of 1% of BC’s electricity generation, the West Kootenay is among the best regions in BC – and Canada – for average annual energy production potential from the sun.

The City portion of funding of this project is included the approved 2019 capital budget.

Grants will fund 26 per cent of the City’s $10,100,000 capital budget in 2019. The City works hard to apply for grants given they provide good leverage of taxes paid by City residents.

Categories: General

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