Merced Announces Solar Powered Facilities

EL NIDO, Calif. — Merced County has recently announced the commission of its new 1.4-megawatt photovoltaic array to power the county’s correctional facilities in El Nido, Calif.

The solar power system consists of two triangular shaped arrays with a total of 6,272-solar panels ground-mounted on 4.5-acres next to the John Latorraca Correctional Facility and the Iris Garrett Juvenile Justice Correctional Complex.

Siemens AG with its U.S. office in Washington, D.C. has developed and installed the panels for the correctional facilities. They have been designed to generate enough electricity to meet approximately 70 percent of the facilities’ peak electricity consumption, normally occurring in the summer months.

Over the next five years the county will earn nearly $1.6 million in solar incentive payments and save more than $14 million in electricity costs over the next 25 years, according to project planners.