The Arcata Marsh Interpretive Center on South G Street achieved zero net energy building status last month with the installation of its 22nd solar photovoltaic panel.
The City’s excessive electricity use tax (EEUT) helped to fund an analysis of the building’s energy use. The analysis determined that making some energy efficiency upgrades to the building and the addition of photovoltaic panels to the building’s existing bank would power the Center’s energy needs so that all its energy use annually would be covered by the amount of electricity it generates. This is the first of what City of Arcata officials hope will be many City facilities to be weaned from fossil fuel use.
The EEUT also contributed the majority of the funding to retrofit the building’s heat source to energy efficient electric heat pumps, installation of energy efficient lighting and other efficient appliances such as bathroom hand dryers which have the added benefit of reducing paper waste.
The Arcata Marsh Interpretive Center’s energy upgrade meets the Arcata City Council’s goal of promoting efficient use of energy and use of renewable energy in buildings, facilities and infrastructure in Arcata. The Center serves as an example within the community of how to convert an existing building into a zero net energy building using non-greenhouse gas, renewable energy sources.
For more information on energy efficiency, contact the Arcata Environmental Services Department at (707) 822-8184.