GM adds rooftop solar power installation to Zaragoza plant
General Motors Corp., the world's largest automaker, announced it is adding the world's largest rooftop solar photovoltaic power installation to its car assembly plant located in Figueruelas, Zaragoza, Spain. When the project is completed in the fall of 2008, the Zaragoza solar installation will cover about 2,000, 000 sq. ft. of roof at the plant and comprises about 85, 000 solar panels.
When fully operational, the Zaragoza solar installation will generate about 12 megawatts of power at its highest output. The installation will generate about 15.1 million kWh of power annually, which is equivalent to the demand of 4,575 households with an average annual consumption of 3,300 kWh in Spain.
GM currently has two of the largest solar power installations in the United States on the roofs of its Rancho Cucamonga and Fontana, California parts warehouses. The Rancho Cucamonga project was the first public solar project in the U.S. over 1 mega watt, when it began operating in the fall of 2006. The solar panels provide about 50 percent of the electricity to the facility.
The Fontana project, also 1 megawatt, became operational in December 2007. It generates about 1.3 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year, which is about the amount needed to power 200 homes yearly.
On the Zaragoza project, GM has partnered with Clairvoyant Energy, Veolia Environmental and the Government of Aragon to develop the renewable energy project. United Solar Ovonic will provide UNI-SOLAR thin film flexible solar laminates for the project.
GM will lease their roof space to Clairvoyant Energy and Veolia Environment, who will build, own and operate the rooftop solar installation. The project helps GM reduce costs, while providing "green" energy to the local community's power grid.
The Zaragoza, Spain plant builds the Opel Corsa, Opel Meriva and the Opel Combo for the European marketplace.
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