Increasing energy costs were adding to the annual expenses at Candler Hills Golf Club. The club began looking into alternative energy sources in an effort to reduce costs. One idea was installing solar panels to power the maintenance facility.
After performing an energy audit, the club decided to install a 297 Kilowatt solar energy system on the roof of the maintenance facility. To help offset the initial cost of the system, the club applied for a $90,000 rebate from the local energy provider. They were also eligible for a 30 percent tax credit on the project. The rebate and tax credit reduced the initial cost of the system by 60 percent.
The system was installed over two years ago and consistently provides more than enough energy for the maintenance facility. Surplus energy is supplied back to the grid and acts as a credit with the energy provider. These credits will be applied back to the club when the efficiency of the system eventually decreases below usage. The solar panel system should pay for itself within 12 years and, with the system expected to last for 30 years, there should be total savings of around $200,000 over the life of the system.
One of the challenges faced during this project was being awarded the rebate from the local energy company. Installing the system was contingent on the rebate, which required a fair amount of due diligence in a short period of time. Nevertheless, Superintendent Andrew Jorgensen has no regrets about installing the solar energy system at Candler Hills. The energy savings will reduce annual expenses for years to come. To learn more about this project, read the following article: Going Green With Solar Panels.