Watsonville Green Initiatives


Just 93 million miles outside the City of Watsonville there is a source of totally free energy, the sun. Every day the sun bathes each square yard of our planet with billions and billions of photons of light. Those photons are packed full of energy.

In 2011, Public Works officials decided it was time the City took advantage of this amazing energy resource. Using $3 million from a Federal New Clean Renewable Energy Bond, the City has installed solar panels at three City facilities. The City is now generating over 850,000 kilowatt hours per year of solar energy. This will reduce the City’s annual carbon footprint by 670 tons.

During the first year alone, the project is expected to reduce the City’s energy costs by $292,000. Over their 25 year lifespan, the panels are expected to save the city almost $4 million.

Another green initiative you may have noticed as you drive through the City at night, is that the street lights appear brighter and whiter. This is not an illusion. Using a combination of American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) funds and low and no interest loans from the State and PG&E, Public Works has replaced over 1,800 old street lights with state-of-the-art, energy efficient LED units.

In addition to creating better lighting these new lights are expected to save the City about $96,000 each year in reduced energy and maintenance costs. They will also reduce the City’s carbon footprint by 169 tons.

Those little photons of light really add up to big bucks! For more information call 768-3133.


This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 16th, 2013 at 3:40 pm and is filed under City of Watsonville, Homepage News, Public Works . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.