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March 17, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – A solar project installed at the Operations Center for Helix Water District has been fully certified by SDG&E and begins producing energy starting today, with an official ribbon cutting ceremony planned for March 30th.


"This solar project is a great benefit for Helix using clean, renewable natural resources,” said Kathleen Coates-Hedberg, director on the Helix Water District Board.


Activation of this solar energy facility will:

• Generate an estimated half-million kilowatt hours of clean renewable solar energy annually.
• Produce energy exceeding 90% of the current annual electricity consumption at the Nat L. Eggert Operations Center.
• Save Helix Water District on repair and replacement of sun-damaged equipment with the solar array shade structure.
• Reduce greenhouse gas emissions (CO2) by an estimated 11.9 million pounds over the initial 20-year life of the facility.


The project was a Power Purchase Agreement and cost was minimal for construction oversight costs, said Hedberg.


“We benefit greatly on a known power purchase agreement, with minimal yearly increases and the current rate is lower than SDG&E’s rate,” she said. “The solar roof acts as a shade structure for our piping & equipment storage, which was a project that we postponed several years ago due to budget cuts but now paid for by Borrego Solar.”


Hedberg added, “Ever since I got on the board I have been asking for for an evaluation of all our properties for a solar project to offset our high electricity demands as it takes a lot of energy to move water."

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