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October 15, 2021
Groundbreaking of City Solar Project

PUBLIC INVITATION: Groundbreaking of Citywide Solar Project, Progress On "Sustainable Santa Fe" Goals: Saving Energy, Water, Money

Members of the public and the media are invited to join Mayor Webber and members of the City Council, State representatives, City staff, Yearout Energy Services Company and Positive Energy Solar at a Groundbreaking Ceremony for the City's new solar project.

Where: MRC Sports Complex Pump Station. The location is about half-way between the entrance to the MRC sports complex (aka Soccer Valley), on the right, and Marty Sanchez Links de Santa Fe.

When: Friday, October 15, 2021, from 11:00 a.m. to noon

Background: The solar project will add 2.75 megawatts of renewable energy to the City of Santa Fe’s portfolio. Thirty-eight facilities were considered for the project, and 17 sites were ultimately selected for photovoltaic arrays, including seven City facilities, eight water utility facilities and two Buckman Direct Diversion facilities.

The capacity of the arrays is designed to offset 80% of electricity consumption at selected City facilities and 60% at each of the water and BDD facilities.

In addition to solar, this project includes several other Facility Improvement Measures (FIMs) that will reduce both energy and water consumption. These include:

  • retrofitting or replacing lighting fixtures with LEDs at 29 facilities;
  • recommissioning and upgrading plumbing fixtures at 15 facilities;
  • building envelope improvements, including sealing around windows and doors to improve comfort and efficiency; and
  • replacing old transformers with high-efficiency models.

In total, the project is estimated to save more than $750,000 per year in utility costs, with approximately $500,000 per year of the savings resulting from solar. The water conservation measures are estimated to directly save over 2.2 million gallons a year. This project is also estimated to reduce CO2 emissions by more than 6,742,000 pounds per year, the equivalent of taking 588 vehicles off the road.

Mayor Alan Webber: “Santa Fe continues to lead the way toward a renewable future. We are committed to !00% renewables by 2040 and this project will contribute to our reaching that goal. Our aim is to be the most sustainable city in America.”

Public Works Director Regina Wheeler: "With these arrays, the City will generate renewable energy at the point of use for less money than it costs to buy it from the grid. This project achieves a major milestone in the city’s strategy to solarize all facilities where it is economically and physically feasible. Homeowners and businesses can save money and go green too, by calling a local solar installer. Next, the City is working to make community solar a reality in Santa Fe by making renewable energy from large arrays available for purchase by the City as well as homeowners, schools, businesses."

Contacts: Caryn Grosse, Project Administrator Sr, [bot protected email address]; Dave Herndon, Communications Director, [bot protected email address], (505) 670-0719

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