Environmental Sustainability is defined as meeting our needs today while ensuring that future generations can continue to meet their needs. As a public institution, the Peralta Community College District has an ethical and civic obligation to safeguard a critical public resource- the natural environment. The District also has a duty to establish physical environments and organizational practices that are conducive to student learning and the health, well-being, and effectiveness of all people within the District. The District’s ultimate goal is to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions footprint to net zero.
The solar power installation at Laney College was installed atop the baseball field house and the carports in the adjacent parking lot. The modules were strung in 82 strings of 12 modules each, and wired to a single SMA America 250 kW inverter. Both the rooftop and carport arrays used Unirac Solarmount racking to affix the panels to the roof and carport at a 3° pitch and 7.49° pitch respectively.
The Laney College solar installations were financed with funds generated through the passing of a General Obligation Bond (G.O. Bond) for the Peralta Community College District. GO Bond monies can only be used for capital improvement projects like new construction and renovations to existing facilities. By using bond funds, Peralta will reduce their operating costs through energy savings, and those funds go back into the general fund for expenditures like saving teacher jobs, textbooks, and other educational resources. Solar and other revenue generating measures like Energy Efficiency Measures are the best use of G.O. Bonds, because the funds can’t be spent on general expenditures like faculty and staff salaries, new teachers, the purchase textbooks, paying utility bills, etc.