Veolia breaks ground on 1 MW solar installation for wastewater treatment plant in Arvin, Calif.

Veolia Arvin solar

The city of Arvin, California, and Veolia North America broke ground on a new 1 MW solar energy installation that will meet all the power needs for the city’s wastewater treatment plant and eliminate its greenhouse gas emissions from power generation. Since energy can account for as much as 30% of water treatment costs, this project provides an economic and environmental benefit. 

“This project will save the City thousands of dollars on annual energy bills and is a great green energy project for Arvin,” said Jeff Jones, Arvin city manager.

A subsidiary of Veolia Group, Veolia North America offers a full spectrum of water, waste and energy management services, including water and wastewater treatment, commercial and hazardous waste collection and disposal, energy consulting and resource recovery.

Veolia has operated and maintained the Arvin’s wastewater treatment plant for more than a decade. Last year the city and Veolia began discussions about using renewable energy to reduce the cost and improve the reliability of the plant’s operation as part of the company’s GreenUp strategy, which aims to position Veolia as a driver of technological innovations. The project is financed through a combination of low interest municipal financing and the Federal Inflation Reduction Act.

“Forward thinking cities like Arvin recognize that water and energy are scarce resources that must be conserved for long-term community benefit,” said Patrick Schultz, CEO of Veolia sustainable industries and buildings. “Projects like this are part of our ‘Green Up’ strategy. Veolia is uniquely positioned to help cities and industries improve their operations while meeting their sustainability goals.”

Arvin has long been a sustainability leader among cities. They lead the nation in the number of electric vehicle charging stations per capita, and were the first city to adopt an all-electric fleet of city buses. This decarbonized wastewater plant is only the latest in a series of energy and greenhouse gas emission reduction projects undertaken by the city.

“Arvin is a small, rural community in Kern County that is mighty when it comes to making significant progress in its fleet transition to electric, solar, and EV Charging,” said Christine Viterelli, Arvin’s Grant Manager, who has been pioneering the city’s energy efficiency and fleet transition projects since 2016. “Every renewable energy project that is constructed will have an impact in reducing air pollution and greenhouse gasses.”

— Solar Builder magazine




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