From Cherwell District Council PR
Work is almost finished on a huge Cherwell District Council solar panel scheme which will create income and save power for years to come.
The first were fitted at Thorpe Lane Depot in Banbury almost two years ago and more were added there earlier this year.
Now Bodicote House is generating its own solar power and the council's leisure centres are following suit.
The new panels at Cherwell's Bodicote headquarters cost £131,000 and will generate annual income of more than £13,400 from feed-in tariff while saving upwards of £3,200 on energy costs.With the panels at Thorpe Lane plus those at Spiceball and Woodgreen leisure centres in Banbury, Bicester Leisure Centre and Kidlington Leisure Centre, taxpayers should have combined annual income and savings of almost £84,700.
The feed-in tariff is guaranteed for 25 years and the panels should be paid for within around 17 years, meaning around eight years clear income.
With energy costs constantly on the rise, the energy savings will increase each year and are expected to continue long after the feed-in tariff expires.
Councillor Nigel Morris, Cherwell's lead member for clean and green, said: "The financial and environmental benefits of this scheme are clear.
"Through sound financial planning, we were in a position to take full advantage of the Government's feed-in tariff.
"This is another example of how local authorities can be inventive in how they manage their budgets so vital services can be protected."
The huge savings will also enable the council to minimise council tax increases.
Power generated at the council's four leisure centres will be sold to Parkwood Leisure, which runs them, at market rates and Cherwell will receive the feed-in tariff.
Three of the centres are already kitted out with the panels and Spiceball's installation is expected in the coming weeks.
Paul Nangle, Parkwood's assistant regional director, said: "Parkwood Community Leisure is working actively with Cherwell District Council through a number of initiatives to reduce the carbon footprint of the leisure facilities whilst providing some savings directly back to the council.
"We work with a large number of authorities throughout the country, of which Cherwell District Council is the most progressive in terms of working with environmental technologies and reducing costs."
For further information please contact:
Tel: 01295 221639