For Immediate Release
Sonoma County and ForeFront Power Complete a 963 kilowatt Solar Energy Portfolio at Airport and Nearby Fleet Facility
Sonoma County Airport Joins an Elite Group of 100% Solar Powered Airports in the U.S.
Santa Rosa, CA | February 28, 2022
The County of Sonoma has partnered with ForeFront Power, a leading developer and asset manager of commercial and industrial-scale solar energy and storage projects, to build a 963 kilowatt (kW) solar energy portfolio at Charles M. Schulz-Sonoma County Airport (STS), as well as at the Sonoma County Fleet Operations Building at 709 Russell Avenue in Santa Rosa. Through a five-year collaboration with the County, ForeFront Power installed an 884 kW solar canopy in the Airport parking lot, and a 79 kW rooftop solar array at the Fleet Building.
ForeFront Power analyzed the Airport's annual electrical consumption and designed a solar energy system to cover all of the Airport's electrical energy needs. They developed a solar parking canopy comprising 2,010 solar modules that generate enough renewable electricity to offset 100% of the Airport’s annual electrical demand. PG&E’s Net Energy Metering (NEM) provision allows the Airport to “bank” any excess energy produced by the system during periods of extended sunshine. The Airport can then tap this banked excess energy at night or on cloudy days, or whenever daily electricity demand exceeds the production by its solar energy system.
“Anything we can do to move our community toward a regenerative future is a priority right now,” said Sonoma County 4th District Supervisor James Gore. “Our renewable energy portfolio is one part of Sonoma County’s ambitious sustainability plan to adapt and prepare our communities for climate change. We in Sonoma County are also proud to do our part in helping California and the U.S. reach their climate goals.”
“ForeFront Power is thrilled to see Sonoma County achieve another milestone in its sustainability strategy,” said Rachel McLaughlin, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, at ForeFront Power. “Even as Northern California has faced unprecedented climate challenges, communities are demonstrating their capacity for adaptation and resilience.”
The County selected ForeFront Power to develop, finance, and construct the solar energy portfolio through a power purchase agreement (PPA). Combined, the two systems at Airport and Fleet will generate over 1,495,500 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy per year, offsetting 1,060 metric tons of CO2 emissions, which is equivalent to removing 230 passenger vehicles from the road each year.
About ForeFront Power
ForeFront Power is a leading North American developer of solar and energy storage solutions for commercial, industrial, public sector and community solar customers. The ForeFront Power team has 15 years of experience working together to develop more than 1,300 behind-the-meter and community solar and storage projects, totaling more than 1 gigawatt-DC of renewable electricity. Headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in New York City and Mexico City, the company offers business, government, education and community solar customers in the U.S. and Mexico a broad array of development, advisory and asset management services. ForeFront Power is a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsui & Co. Ltd., a global energy infrastructure and investment leader with a robust balance sheet and an “A” credit rating from Standard & Poor’s. For more information, visit forefrontpower.com.
Communications, ForeFront Power
Marketing Specialist, Charles M. Schulz - Sonoma County Airport
Paul Gullixson, Communications Manager
County Administrator's Office, County of Sonoma