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Gap Solar Power at Fresno DC Goes Online

BY CSA STAFF

(Oct. 7) Gap Inc. unveiled a one-megawatt (MW) solar-power system at its West Coast distribution center campus in Fresno, Calif. The installation, undertaken with MMA Renewable Ventures, Baltimore, and SunPower Corp., San Jose, Calif., is one of the largest in Northern California. It features a ground-mounted solar-tracking system on a five-acre site, and is expected to offset 2.5 million lbs. of greenhouse gases annually.

“We are very excited this solar-power system is now online,” said Kindley Walsh Lawlor, senior director of strategic planning and environmental affairs for Gap Inc. “We made the commitment to host this solar system nearly 15 months ago and are proud to support the clean energy it generates.

MMA, which owns and operates the system, joined with Gap to develop an innovative partnership that leverages tax credits and incentives to finance the system. The arrangement enables Gap to buy the power generated from the system through a long-term contract, or a power-purchase agreement (PPA), eliminating the need for a major capital investment. MMA owns the renewable energy credits and environmental attributes associated with the system.

“By securing power through a power-purchase agreement, Gap will benefit from cost savings from the system’s first day of operation and for years to come, said Matt Cheney, CEO, MMA Renewable Ventures.

The array was designed and installed by SunPower. It utilizes the company’s Tracker system, which follows the sun’s movement during the day, increasing sunlight capture by up to 25%, compared to conventional fixed-tilt systems, while also significantly reducing land-use requirements.

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ASHRAE Manual for Saving Energy

BY CSA STAFF

(Oct.3) An updated version of the User’s Manual for ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007, Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, is now available. The manual is intended to assist users of the ASHRAE/IESNA energy-conservation standard in energy-efficient design. It has gone through an extensive revision process to incorporate the various addenda approved since the 2004 edition.

Updates have been made to reflect and illustrate the changes in every portion of the 90.1 Standard. Changes have been to Appendix G, which provides specific guidance on the rules and procedures used to simulate building energy and energy costs, when the objective is to substantially exceed the requirements of 90.1.

“The Appendix G changes will be particularly useful to people involved with projects that are trying to achieve a certain amount of savings over and above the minimum requirements of the standard,” said Keith Emerson who oversaw review of the manual for the Standard 90.1 committee.

The 90.1-2007 User’s Manual illuminates the standard by providing detailed instruction, calculation examples and compliance forms for the design of commercial and high-rise residential buildings. It includes sections on administration and enforcement, building envelope, HVAC systems, service water heating, power, lighting, the energy-cost budget method and the building-performance rating method.

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Free Solar Assessments Offered to San Francisco Firms

BY CSA STAFF

(Oct.1) The 1,500 largest firms in San Francisco can each get a free solar assessment and an energy audit, if they enlist in Mayor Gavin Newsom’s drive to install enough solar-power arrays to generate five megawatts of electricity—double the city’s current capacity for sun power.

Newsom and his office said he will invite the largest businesses in town to join his new Solar Founders’ Circle in the coming weeks.

The free assessments and audits for companies will help businesses identify potential energy efficiencies and savings, the mayor and his office said in announcing the plan.  The assessments and audits will also help firms determine their solar-power potential and the likely costs, incentives, offsets, savings and energy generated from installing a solar-power system on their property.

The program is to be funded in part by a $200,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar America Cities initiative and the San Francisco Department of Environment’s SF Energy Watch Program.

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