California college invests in 1-MW solar carport to offset 100 percent of its energy use

Yuba College, a community college part of the Yuba Community College District, this week completed a 1-MW solar carport installation that it says could result in $10 million of avoided utility costs over the life of the system. The District purchased the solar outright, which resulted in optimal savings.

The project is expected to produce nearly 1.5 million kilowatt-hours of energy in the first year, which is equivalent to the amount needed to power approximately 260 average homes in California annually. The energy produced from the Yuba College solar carport system together with its other solar project at Woodland Community College, is enough to offset 100% of the District’s electric energy use with solar power.

Borrego Solar Systems, the largest private commercial solar developer and installer nationwide, built Yuba College’s system. The solar energy system is comprised of 792 LG Electronics panels. Yuba College is also installing an energy storage unit as part of their clean energy initiative, which will help save the facility on utility demand charges. The system is expected to be installed and operational by next winter.

“The YCCD Governing Board and leadership is committed to reducing our carbon footprint for our students and community. This is the environmentally responsible action to take and it will result in substantial cost savings that will lower our operating costs,” said Dr. Douglas Houston, Chancellor.

“Additionally, the District’s use of Clean Renewable Energy Bonds (CREBs) to finance this project allows the District to apply Measure J General Obligation Bond funds to other important and needed facilities projects that directly impact student success.”

POWERGEN International is designing a program to focus on how municipalities, universities, schools and hospitals can power their operations with onsite energy. Learn more about POWERGEN, which takes place in New Orleans, November 19-21, 2019 here.
Previous articleThree strategies for building solar and wind energy systems on potentially contaminated lands
Next articleDuke Energy to build North Carolina solar estimated at $404M
Jennifer Runyon has been studying and reporting about the world's transition to clean energy since 2007. As editor of the world's largest renewable energy publication, Renewable Energy World, she observed, interviewed experts about, and reported on major clean energy milestones including Germany's explosive growth of solar PV, the formation and development of the U.S. onshore wind industry, the U.K. offshore wind boom, China's solar manufacturing dominance, the rise of energy storage, the changing landscape for utilities and grid operators and much, much, more. Today, in addition to managing content on POWERGRID International, she also serves as the conference advisory committee chair for DISTRIBUTECH, a globally recognized conference for the transmission and distribution industry. You can reach her at

No posts to display