Many school districts around the country are facing a common dilemma: they want to incorporate new programs and technology but are battlingbudget cuts. In such a trying financial climate, long-term investments — like renewable energy — are completely out of the question… right?Think again.
Enter Amsolar with its “space-for-electricity” financing model, whichpromises to help financially strapped school districts install solarenergy systems. Here’s the deal: Amsolar will install, own andoperate the systems on campus rooftops. In exchange for using the space, Amsolar will sell the generated electricity to the schools at a fixed,predetermined rate.
The San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) has taken advantage of the offer. Just days ago the SDUSD signed a 22-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Amsolar. According to the deal, 23,000 solar photovoltaic (PV)panels will be installed atop 80 roofs and on 1,500 carports at 20campuses across the school district. All told, Amsolar expects toaccount for 11 percent of the total school district’s energy usage,including administrative offices, according to CNET News.
San Diego schools are not the only game in town, however: Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District has taken steps to install solar panels, too.