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School reduces energy costs by 43% with solar

Reed Intermediate School in Newtown, CT, wanted to switch to more environmentally-conscious operations. The school partnered with the Newtown Sustainable Energy Commission to bring the largest solar installation to date to Newtown and reduce their energy costs by 43%. Centrica Business Solutions installed the massive system while working under a unique schedule.

43%
Reduction in energy costs
$1.5M
Projected savings over 25 years
196
Tons of waste recycled

Helping the environment

Reed Intermediate School in Newtown, CT, educates and inspires students in the fifth and sixth grades to excel. Providing a quality education to hundreds of students consumes a lot of electricity (1,958,098 kWh a year!).

That’s where the Newtown Sustainable Energy Commission stepped in. Having already installed solar on several other town facilities, the school project presented an opportunity for its biggest installation to date.

A custom solution

Several students at Reed Intermediate School experienced the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in 2012, so it was extremely important to the selection committee that its solar installer accommodated a sensitivity to loud noises and limit work to evenings, weekends, and during school breaks.

The school chose Centrica Business Solutions because, not only was the team happy to accommodate its special request, but it was very experienced with this type of project and provided the most comprehensive solution at a competitive price. Centrica Business Solutions designed the school’s impressive system and worked diligently during the requested hours to complete this massive project on time.

The results

Reed Intermediate School’s motivation for going solar focused more on going green than the bottom line. However, it is benefiting from lower electricity bills while doing its part to help the environment. Financed through a Power Purchase Agreement with the Connecticut Green Bank, the building owners could go solar with no upfront costs, delivering immediate savings on electricity. Going solar enabled Reed Intermediate School to reduce energy consumption by 39% and the electricity generated from the system on a 25-year average, generated a 43% reduction in electricity costs. The total solar investment is projected to save the school $1.5 million over 25 years, which can be reinvested in educational needs.

System description

• LG 285 watt panels
• SolarEdge 20 kW and 10 kW inverters
• Roof Mount

System size

• 617 kW

System production

• 756,205 kWh annually

Environmental benefits

196 tons of waste recycled instead of landfilled each year
615,734 pounds of coal not burned each year

This project is a large array and has opened many eyes as to just how big this whole alternate energy industry can be. More importantly it has sparked interest among the students as to the possibilities.”
Fred Hurley, Public Works Director, Newtown, CT