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Historic Green Energy Deal Funds Long-Term School Roof Renewal

File image.
by Staff Writers
Toronto, Canada (SPX) May 26, 2011
Toronto District School Board (TDSB) Trustees have approved a landmark agreement that would see solar panels installed on hundreds of school rooftops while offsetting the costs of major roof maintenance.

Not only does the historic arrangement between the TDSB and Amp Solar Limited Partnership offer green solar energy to the community, it gives the TDSB a no-cost, long-term strategy for replacing millions of square feet of aging roofs.

"Our rooftops represent a major untapped sustainable-energy resource," said TDSB Chair Chris Bolton. "By installing solar panels on them, Toronto communities will get clean green energy, 450 schools will receive much-needed roof repairs, and TDSB students will experience an unparalleled real-life lesson in sustainable living."

When fully installed, the panels are expected to generate between 58 and 66 MW of electricity each year, enough to meet the annual needs of 6,000 average Toronto households. The power will be sold into the distribution grid for use by Ontario energy consumers, including TDSB schools.

"This truly is a day for celebration at the TDSB. It's a win-win-win for everyone involved," said Director of Education Chris Spence. "This school board has led the way to realizing a greener future with our highly acclaimed EcoSchools program. Now we're doing it again. This groundbreaking concept is the next step."

"Due to its educational focus, this is the most important initiative of its kind on the planet," said Professor Jose Etcheverry, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University and President of the Canadian Renewable Energy Alliance.

"At 66 megawatts, this astounding project is in the same league as the world's leading solar projects in Germany and Spain, and represents an historic educational and innovation landmark for public institutions across Canada and North America."

The project had its genesis in the TDSB's Go Green: Climate Change Action Plan approved last year. It also supports an Ontario government Strategic Energy Plan directive to provide renewable energy through solar and geo-thermal energy systems.

The number of solar array installations will be determined through the Government of Ontario's Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) process. Ontario Power Authority (OPA) is expected to respond to school-by-school FIT applications in June 2011.

AMP Solar Limited Partnership is a joint venture between AMP Solar Group and Potentia Solar Inc.

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Mineola NY (SPX) May 26, 2011
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