Raymond, an agricultural community of about 4,000, has operated nine municipal buildings and all of its streetlights by using solar energy since mid- 2018.
Town installed a series of solar panels that offset 100% of the Town’s operational electricity use and save nearly 700 tonnes of CO2 per year—a savings of 17,000 tonnes of emissions over the system’s minimum 25-year lifetime, meeting environmental and economic sustainability goals for the community.
Since Alberta produces 36% of its electricity in coal-fired plants, Raymond’s solar energy system reduces annual air pollution from particulates associated with coal generation by an estimated 1300 kg per year.
The Town funded the project with a provincial rebate and a 15-year financing arrangement with the solar PV contractor. With anticipated annual savings of $130,000, the project is expected to pay back one year after the financing period ends, and generate even greater savings over the remainder of the system’s lifespan. The success of the Town’s initiative has attracted interest from a number of other municipalities, and the Town offers tours and provides peer advice and support to assist other communities with similar projects.
Action: Renewable Energy Systems