One of the Largest Solar Farms in North Carolina to Begin Producing Energy for School and Community
Lake Mary, FL March 14, 2011 – ESA Renewables, LLC today announced that the solar farm located at Martins Creek Elementary School in Murphy, NC, will be completed this month. The installation is one of North Carolina’s largest solar farms, the only one of its kind installed at a school district in the state and the third largest farm installed on a school property in the U.S.
The 998 kW solar farm is installed approximately 500 yards adjacent from the school and is situated on five acres. It consists of approximately 4,382 ground-mounted Canadian Solar CS6P polycrystalline modules, which are known for their industry leading PTC efficiency ratings. The system will produce an estimated 1.3 million kilowatt-hours each year, which is enough to power more than 150 average sized homes. As well, the PV system reduces carbon emissions of 936 tons of CO2 a year, which is the equivalent of 4,681 trees sequestered annually.
All of the power generated will be sold back to Tennessee Valley Authority providing power to the local utility grid. Some revenue generated will directly benefit the school system for the duration of the contract.
"ESA is happy to be able to generate a residual income for the school," said Jeffrey Burkett, president of ESA Renewables. "The benefits this solar farm has had, and will continue to have, for the school and the local area are tremendous."
Representatives from the Tennessee Valley Authority, ESA Renewables, Blue Ridge Mountain EMC and the Cherokee County School Board recently visited Martins Creek Elementary School to tour the solar farm.
"After months of sitting stagnant under the direction of a previous owner, construction has resumed on the farm and is scheduled to be commissioned this month – something we are all very excited about to see clean renewable energy be used in this community," said Burkett.
The installation of this clean energy project has had a large school and community impact through job creation. Approximately 10 construction workers, supervisors, electricians and engineers have been employed since its inception.
“It is wonderful to see solar bring so many benefits to a community and school district, and we are excited for the installation to begin producing clean renewable energy with Canadian Solar modules,” said Dr. Shawn Qu, chairman and CEO of Canadian Solar Inc. “Projects like Martins Creek Elementary School greatly aid the movement toward clean solar energy powering homes and businesses across the country, and Tennessee Valley Authority and the school are certain to reap significant benefits from this solar farm installation.”
“It’s great to have a TVA Generation Partner producing clean, renewable solar power in Murphy,” said Les Hartman, manager of Energy Efficiency and Demand Response for TVA’s Northeast District. “Siting the project at the school also helps raise community awareness of renewable energy. We commend Martins Creek Elementary School and thank them for participating in Tennessee Valley Authority’s Generation Partners Expanded Pilot Participation program.”
The farm was designed, engineered, procured, constructed and managed by ESA Renewables, LLC. ESA will operate and maintain the farm for the duration of the 10-year contract.
About ESA Renewables, LLC
Located in Lake Mary, FL, ESA Renewables has positioned itself as a leader in the industry providing turnkey solar PV systems globally. ESA owns and operates a diverse portfolio of over 400 solar PV power generating facilities located in the United States, Puerto Rico, Spain and Italy. Future plans for large scale PV farm implementation include the construction of commercial-scale power generation facilities in Florida, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Georgia, North Carolina, New Jersey and Ontario with the first of these facilities anticipated to be operational in 2010. ESA’s scope of services for these projects includes financing, engineering, construction, procurement and commissioning and long term operation and maintenance. With headquarters in Castellon Spain, ESA has additional offices in Florida, Puerto Rico, France and Italy. For more information about ESA Renewables, LLC, please visit www.esarenewables.com or call 407-536-5346.