San Jose, Calif.-based Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), in partnership with SunPower Corp., Joint Venture Silicon Valley and Wells Fargo, installed solar parking canopy systems, totaling 2.1 megawatts (MW), at its three bus maintenance divisions.
Using a Power Purchase Agreement to finance the systems, it is anticipated that VTA will save $2.7 million in electricity costs over the next 20 years.
This project provides significant environmental benefits. The power derived from these solar panel systems will offset VTA's three bus maintenance divisions' electricity demand. The clean electricity generated by these systems will also offset more than 2,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year, which is equivalent to removing more than 9,000 cars from California's roads or planting 10,000 acres of trees over the next 20 years.
VTA financed the system through a power purchase agreement with SunPower. Under the terms of the agreement, Wells Fargo owns the systems that SunPower designs, builds, operates and maintains. The agency is hosting the systems and buying the electricity at prices that are competitive with retail rates, protected from rising electricity prices. VTA owns the renewable energy credits and environmental benefits associated with the system.