Notice anything new on your favorite county building recently? Next time you’re out and about, look up. You might find a newly installed solar panel system on the roof of your local school or library!
Solar panel systems are an increasingly popular way to be a good steward of the environment! These systems harness renewable energy while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the pollution of our environment.
As part of its commitment to environmental stewardship and the smart spending of taxpayer dollars, Henrico County began a solar renewable energy program in 2019. Since then, 18 solar projects have been either completed or planned for a variety of county buildings. Among some of the first completed were the Public Safety Building and Mental Health East Center, along with a handful of schools and libraries.
Some projects on tap include the Eastern Henrico Recreation Center and a new building at The Academy at Virginia Randolph; both are expected to be completed in 2024. That’s not all! This plan also includes installing a 2-acre solar panel system at the closed Springfield Road Landfill. The cheaper and cleaner energy produced at this site will power a local sewage pump system while also reducing the county’s reliance on fossil fuels!
A large yet important undertaking might seem financially daunting at first. However, the county has made sure to create a program that benefits taxpayers in every way. All of the county’s solar projects use power purchase agreements, which allow the systems to be designed, installed and maintained by a solar developer at no cost to the county! In addition, Henrico is able to buy the renewable electricity at a reduced rate compared with electricity available through the standard utility grid system. Long story short, saving the environment can save YOU money!