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Most schools in Manteca Unified going solar to save $3.2M yearly
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The deal is on to launch a solar power self-sufficiency vehicle for Manteca Unified School District Superintendent.


The Board of Trustees on Tuesday unanimously voted to give the green light for Superintendent Jason Messer to enter into a contract agreement with the two companies that will help financially shepherd the district into establishing a renewable-energy alternative project that would eventually translate into millions of dollars saved in utility bills. It would also make the district less dependent on Pacific Gas & Electric Company as a power provider. In the long run, too, PG&E potentially could be back-crediting the district for non-power usage during the times the classrooms and school offices are being served by the energy generated by the district’s own solar systems.


The project also would eventually make Manteca Unified the owner of the whole system of power generators that will be installed in nearly all of the school campuses, both high school and elementary, plus the district offices on Louise Avenue and Airport Way, as well as other related installations.


Initial figures indicate that energy savings from the project could be as much as $48.1 million in cumulative savings over a period of 25 years, or $3.2 million a year in reduced PG&E bills.


Once the contract agreement is in place, the project could take a year and a half at the most to become reality according to information provided to school officials by Indoor Environmental Services (IES) and Integrated Engineers & Contractors (IEC), the two companies that are working in tandem to get the program on its feet. As part of the agreement that is being hammered out, the two companies also would help the district obtain extra funding for the project through rebates from the California Solar Initiative program. The agreement also would incorporate the type of solar-power installation employed at each school site – mounted on the ground or as a shade structure.


In addition to these installations, the project will also include a Regional Environmental Studies Center on the school district campus, electric vehicle charging stations, HVAC replacements to further lower energy and deferred maintenance costs, and monitors at each site.