Photo courtesy Howard County Government.

The first of 11 solar projects that will comprise Howard County’s Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) has been unveiled at Triple Creek Farm, in West Friendship. The agreement will generate a monumental 44,000,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) a year which will cover more than 50 percent of the county’s energy usage and is the equivalent of taking 6,781 cars off the road.

These solar energy systems will be on county-owned and non-county-owned property. The county then pays a per kilowatt-hour rate for the electricity generated by the solar energy systems, just as it would to any other energy supplier.

There will be solar projects on 11 separate sites:

  • Triple Creek Farm
  • Clear View Farm
  • Rural Rhythm Farm
  • Circuit Courthouse rooftop & ground mount
  • East Columbia Library rooftop & carport
  • Gateway Building rooftop & carport
  • Carrs Mill Landfill
  • 50+ Center in East Columbia
  • Waterloo Firehouse
  • Scaggsville Police Station
  • Detention Center

“The Howard County Power Purchase Agreement is the largest of its kind in the state. Through the PPA, CI Renewables will, at no cost to the county, construct, operate, and maintain the solar panels and associated solar energy generation equipment at its sole expense. These solar arrays will be throughout our community on both public and private land. From rooftops to carports to ground mounts, we’re maximizing our ability to capture solar energy at our libraries, firehouses, police stations, our new circuit courthouse and more,” said Howard County Executive Calvin Ball.

“Howard County Government is providing a great example of how to implement solar power systems across multiple facilities while working with the solar community to identify the best locations,” said Mary Beth Tung, director of the Maryland Energy Administration. “We are delighted to provide funding support to help the county leverage a number of sites, including those that have dual uses such as buildings and parking lots as part of its energy portfolio.”