As part of its years-long effort to build a reputation as one of the nation’s greenest cities, Sacramento is installing more than 8,000 solar panels on City Hall and other city properties.

The city is partnering with SolarCity of San Mateo to place the solar panels at four municipal locations, including the Richards Police Facility and the city’s corporate yards in south Sacramento.

The solar systems will produce enough electricity to light 250 homes.

“It’s our goal to become a greener city, and generating clean energy on our facilities is (in) keeping with that commitment,” said Mayor Kevin Johnson.

He said the solar panels “will save taxpayers money by lowering the city’s energy costs, reduce pollution by generating renewable power and create more local jobs to install the panels.”

SolarCity will install the panels, maintain them and finance their construction.

The city, in turn, will pay for the power produced by the panels at prices anticipated to be lower than current rates.

Dennis Cox, regional director for SolarCity, said the company plans to add about 20 local jobs, partly as a result of the city project. The company currently employs about 81 people in its Sacramento office.

The solar project, which was approved by the City Council earlier this week, is the latest undertaken by the city.

source: sacbee