California jail-top solar array exceeds expectations

System generates enough electricity to power 1,000 homes

Alameda County recently announced that the 1.2MW solar array atop the County Jail in Dublin, Calif., is exceeding expectations since its installation in April 2002. Designed and installed by PowerLight Corp., the solar array now generates enough electricity during the daytime to power more than 1,000 homes.

The system has produced a summer peak demand reduction as high as 879kW, which equates to an overall cost savings of more than $1.2 million when factoring in energy efficiency savings and kilowatt-hours produced by the system.

In doubling its solar development, Alameda County will soon lead the nation’s counties in terms of solar use, generating a total of 2.29MW of power and will soon be meeting 6% of its electrical needs at County-owned facilities.

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