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Solar power farm will reduce costs at Buffalo Pound Water Treatment Plant

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Construction of a solar panel farm at Buffalo Pound Lake has been completed, the facility that is jointly owned by Regina and Moose Jaw will soon help reduce power costs at the Buffalo Pound Water Treatment Plant.

The mayors of Regina and Moose Jaw unveiled a ceremonial panel to mark the facility’s completion.

“The drive in when you see all those solar panels, you realize the work that they’re doing and they’re going to provide somewhere around 10 per cent of the energy needs for this plant,” Moose Jaw Mayor Clive Tolley said.

Hundreds of solar panels four rows deep line the approach to the water treatment plant.

“[There will be] 1.8 megawatts or 1800 kilowatts of AC power it’ll generate, which over a course of a year will generate 2,900 megawatts of power which is about the equivalent power for 400 homes,” Ryan Johnson, CEO of the Buffalo Pound Water Treatment Corporation said.

The electricity generated will power the administration building at the water treatment plant. The $4 million facility will reportedly pay for itself in about 15 years.

“The panels are all installed but they’re still doing hook-ups and the commissioning will occur in the next two weeks so we should be producing power by the end of this month or very early in July but we’re almost done,” Johnson said.

The solar panel farm could be expanded in the future but never to the size required to power the entire water treatment plant. Officials say it uses a tremendous amount of electricity which requires a connection to the regular power grid.

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