Editorial: Solar panels will save money

Installing solar carports over the parking lots are one way to help Citrus College be environmentally conscious.

Citrus needs to engage their idea as a progressive and new project to make our campus green.

On Oct. 7, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill stating that the state of California will need to generate half of its electricity from renewable sources, such as solar and wind energy, by 2030.

Our world runs on fossil fuels, a nonrenewable energy source formed from the remains of dead plants and animals.

The electricity we use today utilizes these fossil fuels to generate.

But we have a limited amount of this energy source and it cannot carry humanity into the next century.

If the governor of California is calling on the whole state to be more energy efficient, Citrus College, a significantly smaller demographic, should be working towards the same goal.

Initial costs of installing solar panels are very costly but there are always companies willing to give schools and colleges grants to assist in payment.

According to a press release on their website, in 2012, SolarCity, America’s largest solar power provider, worked with the Los Angeles Unified School District to provide renewable energy to 26 of their schools.

The solar company saved LAUSD about $776,000 in their first year.

These solar panels could go over the parking spaces in our lots, putting them in plain sight of the California sun, as well as providing shade to students during the blazing summer months.

With solar panels, students will not have to worry about burning up in their cars after class.

Mt. San Antonio College plans to install a solar farm on their campus despite negative push back from the city of Walnut.

The city and residents that live near Mt. SAC are complaining that the solar farm will be an “eyesore” at the entrance of the city.

If Mt. SAC has already met with a solar company, inspite of the city’s resentment, it makes one think as to how valuable solar energy is.

Pierce College, located in Woodland Hills, installed solar panels back in 2003.

Chaffey High School, located in Ontario, has also recently invested in solar carports.

If local community colleges and even high schools have or are planning to implement solar carports, shouldn’t Citrus be in the same lane?

At this moment, solar carports are still a new concept and the few institutions listed above are part of that statistic.

Although Citrus is a beautiful campus, the parking lots are generic and plain.

Because of the ordinary aspect of the parking lot, the aesthetic of the lots will not be affected by the panels.

The panels take a weeks to get installed and up and running.

For a college with already scarce parking, this may seem frightening to students.

One solution to this problem is to work on the installation during the winter or summer sessions, where there are fewer students on campus.

Those two weeks may be brutal but 14 days of discomfort is worth years of saving not only money for the school, but energy as well.

Turning Citrus College into a greener campus could make a small difference, but in the long run, every little but helps.