Solar panels save thousands
Published: Tuesday 26th June 12
Solar panels installed on council roofs earlier this year have already saved the council £16,000 and generated enough energy to power more than 11 average UK households.
The panels have produced more than 37,000kw of electricity since going up on the roof of Reed House in January and the town hall in February. Most of this electricity has been used to run the Council offices.
Since their installation, the panels have saved 20 tonnes of carbon dioxide compared to normal grid electricity. Over their expected lifetime of at least 25 years they are expected to save hundreds of tonnes and generate around £650,000 in savings and revenue for the council.
The electricity generated, and the money and CO2 saved, is expected to sharply increase now that the summer has arrived - despite June's poor weather.
The town hall is a listed building, and the panels have been installed so that they are almost invisible from the street, but make the best use possible of the available roof space.
Now the council is looking at which other of its buildings could have panels installed, including office blocks, leisure centres and housing estates. Dramatic price reductions in the cost of installing them, and on-going government support, make them one of the most cost-effective ways of generating renewable energy in a city.
Executive member for finance and corporate resources Cllr Guy senior (pictured with the panels) said:
"This was a no-brainer for us. The cost of installing the solar panels will be made back from the money they save us, and the income from the electricity generated. The panels also help us meet our commitment, which we take very seriously, to reducing carbon emissions.
"June may have been a washout, but we're still confident that the summer months will see savings rocket - savings that we can pass on to Wandsworth's council tax payers."