REC Solar Installs 300-kW System for Oregon School District

REC Solar, a leader in solar system design and installation, and Kenyon Energy, a national funding, development and operations company for commercial-scale solar power facilities, today celebrate the completion of three solar energy systems at Beaverton (Ore.) School District, with a formal dedication ceremony at Springville K-8 School. This solar project marks the third occasion REC Solar and Kenyon Energy have collaborated successfully with a public education institution in the Pacific Northwest, a traditionally challenging market for solar.

stock - wideshotLocated at three district sites — Elmonica Elementary School, Springville K-8 School and the Health and Science School — the solar installations have a rated capacity of 299.3 kW and produced over 300,000 kWh of solar power during their first year of service, equivalent to the electricity needed to power 26 homes for one year. Additionally, the system will save the Beaverton nearly $20,000 in annual energy costs.

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As in the previous public-private partnership projects at Gladstone School District and Grants Pass School District, Kenyon Energy served as project owner, developer and financier, and REC Solar acted as EPC contractor, designing and building the project. Under the system ownership arrangement, Beaverton schools receive solar energy while Kenyon Energy benefits from Oregon and Federal incentives and tax credits. After a fifteen year period, the school district has the opportunity to buy the system outright.

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“REC Solar and Kenyon Energy took the financial risk out of solar project development and financing, allowing us to focus on our core function: education,” said Richard Steinbrugge, Beaverton’s executive administrator for facilities. “The system provides not only reliable clean energy, but also immediate financial savings that we can reinvest in our schools. Additionally, students can now learn first-hand about solar technologies, offering an unparalleled opportunity to bring science to life.”

“Managing a construction project while school is in session presents its own set of unique challenges,” said Dennis Odden, Senior Vice President of Kenyon Energy. “REC Solar navigated this challenging territory gracefully, completing these systems in a tight time window and on budget. We look forward to future projects with REC Solar, a proven, valued partner in the Pacific Northwest and nationally.”

Beaverton will incorporate the solar systems into district curriculum utilizing the Bonneville Environmental Foundation’s ‘Solar 4R Schools’ program, which boasts a comprehensive staff training component and monitoring system. Students can interact with emissions savings and energy generation data in real time at dedicated kiosks on the school campuses. The data is also available on the Solar 4R Schools website in every classroom in the school district.

“Increasingly, educational institutions are realizing solar makes financial sense,” said Andy Noel, Director of Utility Business Development for REC Solar. “With our partner Kenyon Energy, REC Solar has developed more efficient system designs and innovative cost savings mechanisms that have helped schools in the Northwest save money.”

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