Central Library’s Solar Panels Cut Energy Costs

image of solar panels on roof of library

By the numbers: A total of 250 panels make up a 60-kilowatt solar photovoltaic system that collects sunlight year round and reduce the County’s CO2 emissions by about 100,000 pounds annually.

Central Library’s large, flat, sundrenched roof is now home to the single largest solar photovoltaic installation in Northern Virginia.

The County expects that the panels, installed in August, will cut Central’s energy bills by up to $14,000 a year, by reducing the building’s “peak demand” for electricity and offsetting some of its electricity use. 

The project is part of the County’s Fresh AIRE effort to reduce County government greenhouse gas emissions 10 percent by 2012. In the past decade, the County has slashed electricity consumption at Central by 38 percent through a series of adjustments and retrofits — and that was before the solar panels went up. The County is evaluating the feasibility of installing solar panels on other buildings.

Project entirely funded by federal government
The $290,566 solar project for Central was entirely funded by The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), through the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) program administered by the U.S. Department of Energy.

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