The Darlington Community School District recently announced that the district will be installing a 156 kW solar photovoltaic (PV) system on the roof of the Darlington Elementary and Middle School in the fall of 2015.
The system will generate approximately 200,000 kWh per year, with roughly half of the energy being directed towards the adjacent high school. Overall, it is expected to reduce the two buildings’ energy use by approximately 19%.
The system will also serve as an educational platform for students, teachers, and the community to learn about renewable energy, particularly solar energy.
The installer will be SunVest Solar, based in Pewaukee. SunVest is one of Wisconsin’s most experienced solar energy installation companies, with over seven megawatts of installed capacity since 2009. SunVest will partner with Chuck Smith and Current Electric, who will be the NABCEP-certified lead electrical contractor.
The project is supported by grants from Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy and the US Department of Agriculture. The Darlington Community School District will co-own the system and be a member of the managerial board that helps operate the project.
The system is anticipated to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by over 400,000 pounds per year, which is equivalent to the absorption rate of approximately 150 acres of US forest. The electricity output would meet the power requirements of 18 average US homes.
The district is hoping that completion of the project will take place in late November or early December.