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Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Installations

The Kingscourt Branch of the Kingston Frontenac Public Library is participating in the Ontario Power Authority's microFIT (10 kW) program — collecting solar energy on its rooftop.


City Rooftops Collect Energy

In May 2010, Council approved a plan to invest $5 million in rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) installations on a number of municipally-owned buildings, along with an additional $250,000 funded from the Environmental Reserve Fund to facilitate that investment.

The following sites were selected for the Ontario Power Authority's (OPA) microFIT (10 kW) — micro Feed-in-Tariff — installations that are now underway and should be completed by December 2011:

  1. Fire Hall 1 on Joyceville Road
  2. Fire Hall 2 on Brewers Mills Road
  3. Fire Hall 3 on Gore Road
  4. Fire Hall 7 on Woodbine Road
  5. Fire Hall 8 on Unity Road
  6. Kingston Frontenac Public Library - Central Branch
  7. Kingston Frontenac Public Library - Kingscourt Branch (pictured above)
  8. Kingston Airport
  9. Housing and Social Services Building (362 Montreal Street)
  10. Madoma Community Centre
  11. Artillery Park Aquatic & Fitness Centre

 Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) program

The following sites were selected for installations under the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) program:

  1. A 246 kW installation at the John Counter Boulevard campus. The panels will be deployed on three buildings: the Kingston Transit garage, the administrative building at 1211 John Counter Blvd. and the new Utilities Kingston garage. Roof replacement work will begin this fall, and the solar panel installation will be done over the winter and spring. Target completion date: April 2012.
  2. A 130 kW installation at the Ravensview Water Treatment Plant. (OPA approval is pending.)

Background

The Green Energy and Green Economy Act, passed by the Ontario government on May 14, 2009, amends the Electricity Act to allow a municipality to generate up to 10 MW using a renewable energy generation facility. Previously, municipalities could only generate electricity using an independent corporation. This will allow municipalities to increase their revenue by participating in the OPA's FIT program and selling electricity into the grid.

Under the FIT and microFIT programs, generators of renewable energy can sell electricity to the grid at an attractive fixed price under a 20-year contract.

The City hired 3G Energy Corp. to complete a detailed engineering analysis of a number of potential sites to determine which buildings are most suitable for rooftop solar PV installations of 10 kW or less under the microFIT program. RESCo Energy Inc. was hired to do similar analysis of potential sites for larger installations under the FIT program. The studies included an analysis of the structural capacity, the solar potential, the condition of the roofing and the electrical infrastructure at each site, along with a financial analyses of costs and revenues.