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Martin Proposes Moving Past Solar to Cut Cord

By District Energy posted 01-24-2019 00:00


Ryan Lewis, Allegan Co. News


Martin Public Schools may end up going further than its recent solar array to reduce its power bills.

After swearing in new members at the school board meeting Monday, Jan. 21, superintendent David Harnish said a “combined heat and power,” or CHP, system could be purchased that could eliminate the district’s need to purchase electricity.

“While the solar panels are a function of the grid, this would be a function of the school system,” Harnish said of the proposed project. “This really makes us independent.”

CHP is also known as cogeneration. Used in industry for years, the price has come down enough that it can be used of the scale of the school campus, Harnish explained.

The system would sit outside in the same way air conditioning units do. Fueled using the same natural gas as the school’s new, efficient boilers, it would generate electricity and better capture excess heat and work in tandem with the district’s boilers.

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