Edgefield County School District is reaping benefits from a federal law requiring power companies to invest in green energy. “Because we are a public institution,tax credits were of no use to school districts, so the SCE&G developed a program that would make solar energy an option for us,” explained James Courtney, ECSD Director of Facilities and Operations.
The project under construction at W.E. Parker guarantees twenty-two cents per kilowatt for ten years. “The district received a $267,038 grant to install the panels and borrowed the remaining funding needed at 1.5%,” said David Fallaw, ECSD Assistant Superintendent. The guaranteed rate for the SCE&G results in the district’s loan being paid off in close to four and half years.
“After the loan is paid off, the revenue from the solar panels the district will receive will be close to equaling the power bill of the school. These extra funds will give us the opportunity to upgrade to LED lighting and reduce our power usage even further,” added Courtney. The district will own the solar panels after the debt is retired and could receive the revenue for up to fifteen years. “This is a great opportunity and we are fortunate to be in a position to take advantage of it,” added Fallaw.
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