CCAC Announces Third and Most Extensive Clean Energy Installation

The 540-kilowatt solar array will save Community College of Allegheny County over $750,000 in energy costs in less than 30 years.
Ccac Press Photo


Community College of Allegheny County is further committing to solar power by giving the go-ahead to its third and biggest solar panel installation yet. The new array will cover the roof of the North Campus building in McCandless and produce more than half a megawatt, or 540 kilowatts, of energy. To compare, CCAC’s two current solar arrays generate 15 and 64 kilowatts. CCAC is predicted to save about $27,000 in energy costs a year, which equates to $750,000 over the next 28 years. 

Because of a Power Purchase Agreement, the solar array will be built and operated by BAI Group, while CCAC will pay for the energy generated. The agreement allows CCAC as a tax-exempt organization to acquire solar energy with minimal to no upfront cost. The Power Purchase Agreement was facilitated by Pennsylvania Solar Center through the GET Solar (Galvanizing our Energy Transition) program, which provides the technical and financial guidance needed for organizations to switch to solar power energy. 

“We are honored to partner with the college to make this project a reality. More than a cost-saving measure, this 540kW solar project will serve as an educational tool that will help train the next generation of energy professionals. Pennsylvania has a long history of energy leadership. We believe the state can lead in the clean energy transition as well. This CCAC solar project is a step in that direction,” said Sel Edor, BAI’s Marketing Director of Renewables. 

“This project is a win for the college and for the environment,” said Vice President and Chief Facilities Officer J.B. Messer. “CCAC has no capital or operating expenses—BAI will build, operate and maintain the array, and CCAC will pay for the electricity at a contractually-defined, predictable rate. In addition, our students will be able to use the array to explore concepts in physics, electricity and business.”

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