By Kate Brown/The Signal
California State University, Stanislaus’s current construction project is the installation of solar panels between the art building and reflecting pond.
The solar panels project, with an expected completion date of March 18, is a contracted project totaling 128 days, according to Julia Reynoso de Valadez, Director of Facilities Planning and Finance.
Reynoso de Valadez stated the initial recommendation for the campus to look into solar energy originated with Facilities Services.
From there, the idea was presented to University Facilities Planning Advisory Committee, a group that includes representatives from all corners of the campus community: administrators, faculty, staff and students.
UFPAC reviewed the project with Facilities Services Oct. 12, 2012.
Funding for the project is coming from savings accrued during the Science 1 Building renovation, which Reynoso de Valadez explained is a Lease Revenue Bond.
“The project contract is for $529,652,” Reynoso de Valadez said.
“However, it also includes installation of a generator to ensure the continuous operation of the sewer lift station and irrigation pumps.”
Instead of the traditional canopy-style solar panels normally seen in parking lots, the campus is using the grass area as a base for the panels, which will be placed on pedestals.
Reynoso de Valadez talked about the sustainability benefits of the project as being part of the university’s decision.
“Significant contributing factors to the decision are the sustainability aspects of increasing green energy sources to the campus, reducing our impact to greenhouse gases and complying with Assembly Bill 32 – California Global Warming Solutions Act,” Reynoso de Valadez said.
The solar panels are projected to increase energy efficiency once the installation is completed.
“The numerical analysis is only one component of the decision process,” Reynoso de Valadez said. “But it is estimated that the solar panels will produce approximately 34,800 kWh to help offset the electrical demands of the irrigation and storm pumps.”
One month from now CSU Stanislaus will join the group of solar-friendly California State Universities.
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