The largest solar electric rooftop system at any university in the world and the largest system in Southern California will be installed at Loyola Marymount University in early 2003, providing a cleaner, more efficient source of electricity generated from California’s famous sunshine.Los Angeles, California – January 10, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] Thanks to a partnership between Los Angeles’ Loyola Marymount University (LMU), the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), the Southern California Gas Company (SCGC), and solar electric company PowerLight, the 723 kWh peak solar rooftop system will be installed at the college’s campus in Westchester on three separate buildings. Estimated at a total cost of more than US$4.3 million, the project cost will be offset by rebates – US$3.7 million from the LADWP, and US$325,000 from SCGC – resulting in an actual cost to the University of US$325,000. LMU receives the US$325,000 incentive from SCGC as part of a statewide program implemented by the California Public Utilities Commission. Encompassing a combined 81,000 feet of rooftop, the total project will generate roughly 880,000 kWhs annually – producing enough clean electricity in the daytime to power more than 150 homes in the Los Angeles area and resulting in an annual reduction of carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to driving a car more than two million miles – or the amount that can be consumed by about 233 acres of trees annually. Construction is expected to be complete on all three facilities by April. “This is a big win for everyone,” said Lynne B. Scarboro, Loyola Marymount University’s vice-president for administration. “Loyola Marymount will have a cost-effective, reliable, non-polluting system that will save us more than US$120,000 annually, and we will be contributing to the well-being of our planet, and in particular, the well-being of Southern California. We’re grateful for the support of the LADWP and the Gas Company, and applaud their efforts in helping us address the energy crisis.” By investing in onsite solar generation, LMU will be able to effectively integrate solar electricity into its energy mix, thereby lowering operating costs, reducing purchases of expensive peak electricity, and doing its part to aid California’s ongoing energy shortage. In addition to generating electricity, PowerLight’s solar roof system provides thermal insulation and protects the roof from weather and UV radiation, resulting in decreased heating and cooling energy costs and extended roof life.