Office with green roof adds solar panels estimated to provide 80 percent of annual kWh energy offset
Sixty-five square miles of Twin Cities-area water resources are monitored and protected by the Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District (RWMWD). The agency ensures that water making its way to the Mississippi River from wetlands, streams, and lakes in its jurisdiction arrives as clean as possible—and now the RWMWD is trying to help keep the skies pollution-free as well. Its district office building along Gervais Creek in Little Canada is going solar with a system from local, St. Paul-based All Energy Solar that will offset an estimated 80 percent of the building’s annual unit energy costs.
“We’re so proud to add this solar installation to our building, where it will fit right in with our eight rain gardens, our eco-friendly drainage promoters like porous pavers and parking lot trench drain, and our green roof of living plants,” said Chris O'Brien, RWMWD Communications Coordinator. “As part of our mission to protect the watershed, we act as educators. Our building has always been a place for showing volunteers and school groups the latest in sustainable landscaping. Now we’re telling an even bigger story about sustainability by adding clean energy to the picture. We’ve even made our online solar monitoring tool visible to the public so everyone can follow along and see how much solar power our panels collect.”
“We love any chance we get to partner with an entity in the government sector on solar,” said Michael Allen, president and co-owner of All Energy Solar. “The proof of value for the RWMWD roof will be available online, which is a great education tool, and shows that green power is truly cost-efficient. The solar array looks great on top of its modern District Office, right next to a green roof. And when you think about it, we don’t go through the trouble of protecting our supply of clean water so we can suffer the effects of air pollution and climate change from elevated carbon dioxide—clean water and clean air are part of the same agenda.”
The property, at 2665 Noel Drive in Little Canada, has been outfitted with a 48kW array of 150 solar panels on the building’s pitched roof. The system is expected to generate roughly 50,000 kWh of electrical offset in Year 1, covering upwards of 80 percent of the building’s electrical power needs.
The Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District is responsible for preserving and improving water resources and related ecosystems in eastern Ramsey County and western Washington County. Partnering with the 12 cities in our district, we work across municipal boundaries to manage about 65 square miles that eventually drain into the Mississippi River, including 20 lakes, five streams and over 1,000 wetlands. The district office, located along Gervais Creek in Little Canada, is a demonstration site for these practices with native landscaping, rain gardens, a porous parking lot and green roof. The site also features a new solar roof equipped with an online monitoring system so you can see how much clean energy it produces each day.
All Energy Solar is headquartered in St. Paul, Minn. and serves customers in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, New Hampshire, New York and Massachusetts. All Energy Solar provides a full-service solar energy integration experience for residential, commercial, agricultural and government customers looking to make the transition to solar energy. The company provides accurate return on investment forecasting, direct financing and hands-on help navigating the incentive and rebate process. With industry-leading certifications and full electrical and building licenses, All Energy Solar installs quality solar power systems at competitive prices and monitors and maintains the systems after installation. To learn more, visit www.allenergysolar.com.