SolarCity to power 26 Los Angeles schools

SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive praised Los Angeles as a leader in solar adoption.

SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive praised Los Angeles as a leader in solar adoption.

SolarCity Corp. said it is planning a 7.4-megawatt solar power project that will bring renewable energy to 26 Los Angeles Unified School District schools.

The project will allow the school district to save more than $776,000 in the first year and more than $25 million over the next 20 years, San Mateo-based SolarCity said.

The company has already installed solar panels at 17 schools and has contracted with LAUSD to install systems at another nine schools by the first half of 2013. Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

The solar power systems will provide clean electricity for schools during the day and reduce the need for expensive peak power utility production and lowering transmission costs, SolarCity said.

“SolarCity’s 26-school solar project will help LAUSD achieve its ambitious renewable energy goals while preserving budget dollars for teachers and student services,” SolarCity Chief Executive Lyndon Rive said in a statement. “The LAUSD project will teach future generations about the environmental benefits of solar, and help ensure that the city of Los Angeles remains a leader in solar adoption.”

SolarCity said the solar projects will provide students with firsthand demonstrations of how solar technology works and of solar energy’s benefits. SolarCity has developed a “solar walking tour” featuring educational signage illustrated with graphics and descriptions of the projects. Each school will be equipped with a solar demonstration kit.

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