Churchill Park United Church Solar-Electric Project Goes Live June 19, 2020.
WINNIPEG – June 30, 2020 – A solar-electric installation for the church building shared by the congregations of Churchill Park United Church (CPUC) and Korean United Church (KUC) at 525 Beresford Ave. has finally been completed, more than two years after it was announced in April 2018.
“Our original expectation was that the project would be completed by summer 2018,” CPUC Leadership Team chair, Glenn Harrison said. “But due to the inability of the original contractor, Solar Manitoba (a division of Sycamore Energy Inc.) to proceed with the project after considerable delays, the two congregations elected to transfer the project to Evolve Green and retain an $18,000 grant from the Manitoba Hydro solar rebate program.
The project involved installation of 62 solar panels on the flat roof above the church gymnasium. Although the building has a steeply sloped south-facing roof over the sanctuary offering an ideal angle for capturing sunlight, that roof is shaded by mature elms on the boulevard making it less efficient. With the Hydro rebate, the total project cost was approx. $39,000.
The system for the CPUC/KUC building was designed to provide a two-way power flow that will supply electricity back to the Manitoba Hydro power grid for credits during times of low demand especially during long summer days. The building would draw down those credits during the short days of winter. The system is expected to generate 22,140 kWh annually and to pay for itself in 12 to 14 years at current power rates, but less time if significant proposed power rate increases are implemented in upcoming years. The solar panels are guaranteed for 25 years with a life span of about 30 years.
“As faith communities, we collectively accept responsibility to be stewards of our environment, especially given the threat of global warming and the need to reduce greenhouse gasses,” Harrison said. “This project is a tangible demonstration of that commitment and positive action we can take as a community to build on individual actions our parishioners may choose to take. And, it makes great economic sense in providing operational savings for the building over the long term.”
At the time of the original CPUC/KUC project announcement, it was believed to be a first for a United Church building in Manitoba.