WINDSOR, Ont.—Vitamin and supplement manufacturer Jamieson Laboratories is installing a rooftop solar array at its manufacturing plant in Windsor, Ont.
The first stage of the project has been completed and is producing 630 kilowatts of energy. The second stage is scheduled for completion this fall, and when finished, will be comprised of 2,300 hundred panels over 50,000 square feet—one of the largest solar installations in the province. Government officials say it’s the largest since the Ontario Feed-in-Tariff program was introduced and is expected to create 70 jobs at peak construction.
“At Jamieson, we are always looking efficient, sustainable manufacturing solutions,” said John Falls, vice-president of global operations at Jamieson Laboratories. “We are proud to be part of Ontario’s growing clean energy sector—contributing clean energy to the electricity grid and reducing harmful greenhouse gas emissions.”
The full 1.3 megawatts (MW) of electricity that will be generated each year after the installation is completed will be enough to power 120 homes. The equivalent amount of electricity takes nine hours to produce at a coal-fired plant, according to Solar Power (SPN), the Aurora, Ont.-based firm specializing in rooftop solar installations that developed the Jamieson rooftop project.
“As more business go on-board with rooftop solar, the day is in sight when coal power in Ontario can be entirely replaced with renewable energy generated locally at he point of need,” said Peter Goodman, president and chief executive officer at SPN.
“This distributed generation model eliminates the losses and inefficiencies of long-distance electricity transmission, while putting power directly in the hands of the community. It is the foundational building block of the smart grid of the future.”
For the installation, SPN partnered with the industrial contractor GSL Group Ltd. through its Wallaceburg, Ont. location, and Masotti Construction, based in Windsor, Ont. The solar panels were manufactured Silfab Ontario Inc., in Mississauga. SPN also worked with Windsor power distributor, EnWin Utilities Ltd., to connect Jamieson Laboratories to the grid, and partnered financially with PowerStream.
The company also has made agreements to install solar panels on 124 buildings in southwestern Ontario.
“With a large forwar- thinking industrial base in Windsor, flat manufacturing rooftops, coupled with sun hours well above the provincial average have made the region a natural home for rooftop solar,” Goodman explained. “With an additional 180 agreements across the rest of the province, it is clear that the manufacturing sector is embracing the economic and social benefits of solar power.”