Photo Voltaic (PV) panels convert solar energy directly into electricity. The electricity can then be coupled to the building’s electrical distribution, where it can be used within the building or sold back to the utility.
This building has a relatively large roof area with a clear exposure to the Eastern, Southern and Western skies.
Under the standard offer contract, the PV connection is upstream from the building, and consumption patterns are not affected, such as peak load shaving. Net metering is only $0.11/kWh, but there are less costs associated with administration, more benefits from peak load shaving, and more potential for battery storage.
The Ontario Power Authority will buy back electricity generated by PV cells for $0.802/kWh under their “Feed In Tariff” contract. At this rate, the Return on Investment for a typical system are 12-15 years. inverters and panels have warranties for 10-25 years respectively. Domestic Content issues restrict the equipment, labour and design. The payback for this opportunity is greater than 20 years.
There are other benefits to the community, province and country, however. These benefits include reduced smog, reduced summer peak grid load, economic development and environmental leadership. We recommend installing 10 kW of panels to participate in the microFIT Program for ~$125,000