Petaluma City Schools decided at its last board meeting to move forward with the implementation of two new solar and battery microgrids. In recent years, power outages and wildfires in the region have threatened the district’s ability to provide access to personalized instruction and consistent education. PCS is committed to improving the environmental sustainability of its infrastructure and operations.
Recently, Petaluma’s Board of Education unanimously passed Resolution 1718-29, calling for commitment to climate action through both education and an assessment of its own greenhouse gas footprint. PCS has historically embraced renewable energy and demonstrated early leadership in the state by installing solar PV systems at all of its school facilities beginning in 2003. Now the district has decided to take another step towards energy independence and embrace microgrid technology.
With the support of TerraVerde Energy, the district’s energy consultants, PCS evaluated the feasibility of adding energy storage systems to campuses with existing solar PV systems. After the feasibility assessment was completed, the district and TerraVerde conducted a competitive procurement process to solicit proposals from qualified companies. As a result, PCS Scale engaged Microgrid Solutions to install 4.2 MWh of energy storage and microgrid controllers at Casa Grande High School & Petaluma Junior High School, which, when combined with the existing solar power at these locations, will reduce both electricity costs. will decrease to provide backup power to these campuses during power outages.
These projects will leverage funding available through California’s Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP).
“We are very excited to be at the forefront of this creative and eco-friendly method of providing backup power to our schools,” said Matthew Harris, Superintendent of Petaluma City Schools. “With so much uncertainty and disruption in recent years, microgrid systems can provide our students with much-needed continuity when there is a power outage. This project also gives us the opportunity to put our values into action as it aligns with one of our recently adopted district goals of improving the long-term sustainability of our organization, infrastructure and operations.”
News item from TerraVerde Energy