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El Dorado Elementary School Goes Solar!
School Celebrates Activation of a 180 Kilowat New Solar Panel System

El Dorado Elementary School Goes Solar!

School Celebrates Activation of a 180 Kilowat New Solar Panel System

LOS ANGELES, Calif., Mar. 18, 2011  /PRNewswire/ -- Unified School District (LAUSD) Board Member Nury Martinez today joined students, parents, guardians, staff, members of the community and special guests for a solar celebration at El Dorado Elementary School. The event celebrated the recent activation of a 180 kilowatt (kW), 592 solar panel system on the school's rooftops. The new solar panel system is expected to save the school district nearly $1 Million over the next 20 years.

The event also highlighted the signing of a sustainability agreement between LAUSD and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP). The agreement formalizes the relationship between the two agencies and strengthens their commitment to work together on goals related to sustainability.

"This installation is a remarkable achievement," Martinez said. "Not only are there great environmental benefits from this system, but it will also help offset El Dorado's electricity costs and will save general fund dollars during these difficult economic times."

"I want to thank LAUSD for its strong commitment to solar power and sustainability," LADWP General Manager Ronald O. Nichols said. "These solar panels will help improve the environment and keep us moving toward our goal of generating more power from clean, renewable sources."

In December 2009, LAUSD activated its first solar panel system, a one megawatt (MW) system at the Pico Rivera warehouse. By December 2011, seven LAUSD school sites will have new solar systems installed: Ann Elementary School; Banning High School; Canoga Park High School; Cleveland High School; El Dorado Elementary School; Polytechnic High School; and Roybal Learning Center.

"The use of solar energy offers huge potential for natural resource and climate protection, and for the expansion of renewable energies on the road to a future-oriented energy supply for El Dorado Elementary School and the Los Angeles Unified School District," LAUSD Local District 2 Director of School Services Jack Bagwell said. "Both Local District 2 Superintendent Alma Peña-Sanchez and I are very proud to have one of our Local District 2 schools at the forefront of this effort."

"School districts, colleges and universities in California are saving hundreds of millions of dollars in electricity costs with solar power systems, while helping California achieve its renewable energy goals," SunPower Residential and Commercial Business Group President Jim Pape said. "Reliable, high efficiency SunPower systems are being installed at seven LAUSD schools, generating clean, renewable solar power during the times of day when electricity is most valuable, and lightening the load on education budgets."

"LAUSD's continuing commitment to renewable energy is realized through our solar projects," LAUSD Deputy Chief Facilities Executive Neil Gamble said. "This is an important step for the District to achieve its goal to install 21 MW in the next three years."

The solar system installation at El Dorado Elementary School is of LAUSD's current $19.5 billion New School Construction and Modernization Program. Its goal is to provide every student with the opportunity to attend a safe and healthy neighborhood school operating on a traditional, two-semester calendar. For more information, please visit: www.laschools.org.