Gila County Solar Energy Project
Pictured: Greg Patzer with Kitchell, Board of Supervisors- Mike Pastor, Tommie Martin, Shirley Dawson, Richard Rosales with APS, Board of Supervisor- elect John Marcanti, Tom Harris with PV Advanced Concepts, Mark Bettis and Aaron vanBoer with Tioga Energy.
Tioga Energy, a leading provider of renewable energy services to commercial, government and non-profit organizations, today announced the company completed two solar electric systems for municipally owned facilities in Gila County, Ariz. The 390-kW project is expected to generate a lifetime electricity cost savings of nearly $500,000.
The Globe Courthouse now features a 205-kW solar electric system, designed to serve as a shade canopy for the facility’s parking lot. The Courthouse will meet approximately 39 percent of its electricity needs with solar power.
Additionally, a 185-kW solar parking canopy is in place at the Central Heights Complex, home to Gila County operations including the Department of Elections and the Office of Emergency Management. That solar energy system is estimated to meet 84 percent of the facility’s electricity needs. Both systems were constructed by Phoenix-based Kitchell.
By executing a 20-year SurePath® Solar power purchase agreement (PPA) with Tioga Energy, the County avoided all the expenses associated with system ownership. Instead, Tioga developed, financed, owns, operates and maintains the systems; the County will simply purchase the generated solar electricity from Tioga at rates lower than those of the local utility.
“Tioga Energy helped us iron out the economics of going solar, enabling the County to benefit from federal and state-level incentives we couldn’t access on our own and implement our renewable energy program with no upfront costs,” said Steve Stratton, Director of the Public Works Department for Gila County. “These long-term savings free up resources we can redirect toward community enrichment endeavors, including facility upgrades and service improvements.”
In addition, Tioga provided the Globe Courthouse and the Central Heights Complex each with an educational kiosk that allows viewers to view real-time system production and weather data along with the corresponding environmental benefits of using solar energy.
The systems will offset the production of some 337 tons of CO2 each year, the equivalent of approximately 733,000 vehicle miles not travelled each year, or conserving 38,000 gallons of gasoline.
“Municipal leaders are increasingly investigating solar as a way to simultaneously reduce environmental impact and utility bills but often lack the means to bring their clean energy goals to life in a cost-effective manner,” said Paul Detering, CEO of Tioga Energy. “Our project with Gila County underscores Tioga’s ability to work alongside government organizations to develop long-term financial solutions that enhance the viability of renewable energy for municipalities across the country.”