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Grant Recipients

TransAlta Coal Transition Board Awards a Grant to support a solar project for the Tumwater School District Grant to help build solar project at Peter G. Schmidt Elementary,

Centralia, Wash. (November 21, 2019) The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board announced today it has approved a $99,060 grant to the Tumwater School District to support the construction of a 34kW Washington-made solar system at the Peter G. Schmidt Elementary school. The solar system project will include an interactive student engagement solar dashboard system that the district can utilize for all Tumwater students to learn more about energy generation, sustainability and how the overall solar system works.

The $99,060 grant is leveraged with funding received from the Washington Department of Commerce Energy Efficiency and a local district contribution. The solar system will save over 42,000kwh per year, accounting for 6% of the overall school’s annual energy consumption.

“Solar power provides a more efficient way for schools to meet their energy needs and the efficiency results in cost savings as well as ecological benefits” says Lori Schmitt, board member. “During the planning and design for the new building the District considered solar energy unfortunately the cost did not fit in the budget. We are pleased that the Energy Technology Board has been able to provide funding to add the infrastructure which will allow not only a savings to the District but will provide a unique educational opportunity for students.”

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

“Tumwater School District would like to express our gratitude for this opportunity. With this successful partnership between many organizations, we are excited for Peter G. Schmidt Elementary to start using renewable energy source and reduce the footprint of our school” states Tumwater School District’s Director of Facilities, Mel Murray. “The students and teachers are also very excited to use the digital dashboard as an educational resource to have better awareness of solar energy and to learn how they can and are helping our environment.”

Tumwater School District is in Thurston County, Washington. The District encompasses 117 square miles and is the third largest district in Thurston County, serving over 6,000 students. The District includes the City of Tumwater and its urban growth area and unincorporated Thurston County.

“ATS truly values the partnerships we have with our customers, such as the Tumwater School District” says Moe Salem, Business Development Manager for ATS Automation. “Not only are we able to assist the District in implementing energy-saving technology, we also get to provide learning opportunities for students to engage in conservation and energy management.”

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

TransAlta Coal Transition Board Awards $165k to the City of Granger,

Centralia, Wash. (November 5, 2019) – The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board announced today it has approved a $165,000 grant to the City of Granger to support the construction of an 50kW ground based photovoltaic solar array that will tie into a well pump main electrical  disconnect located at the corner of 3rd Street and E Street in the City of Granger. This 50kW solar project will produce approximately 66,744kW per year through a net metering agreement with Pacific Power.

The $165,000 grant will be leveraged with funding received from the Washington Department of Commerce Energy Efficiency and Solar Grants Program and the City of Granger to fully fund the solar project. The project will lower energy costs currently being incurred by the well pump and support the city’s commitment and good stewardship to using renewable energy.

“The mission of the Energy Technology Board is to review and fund effective energy projects that will create energy, air quality, haze or other environmental benefits for the State of Washington” said Mickey Dreher, board member. “Installation of solar power systems align with the transition to clean energy and helps combat greenhouse gas emissions which fulfills the mission of the board. In addition, because the project will be utilizing solar modules manufactured in the state of Washington, the city will qualify for the cost recovery incentive payments. A win for the state and a win for the city.”

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

Granger is a city of 3,945 people located in the Yakima Valley in the State of Washington. The city provides fire, police and other municipal services to city residents and has an ongoing commitment to upgrade facilities and technology to best serve city residents. It is the city’s goal to continue to find ways to reduce operating expense and implement sustainable energy sources where it makes financial sense to do so.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

TransAlta Coal Transition Board Awards $290k to the Town of Fairfield,

Centralia, Wash. (October 22, 2019) The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board announced today it has approved a $290,000 grant to the Town of Fairfield to support the construction of an 96kW ground based photovoltaic solar array at the Waste Water Treatment Plant. Producing renewable energy, this 96kW solar project will produce approximately 113,400kW per year through a net metering agreement with Avista Utilities and utilizes State of Washington manufactured solar panels that qualify for cost recovery incentive payments.

The $290,000 grant will be leveraged with funding received from the Washington Department of Commerce Energy Efficiency and Solar Grants Program and the Town of Fairfield to fully fund the solar project. The project will reduce the town’s electric bill at the waste water treatment plant and allow the town to redirect those funds to capital improvement projects.

“This project adds renewable energy while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and allows for the town to use their cost savings to invest in other ways to support the community” says Lori Schmitt, Energy Technology Board member. “The board sees this project as adding to the solution in meeting the environmental goals for the state of Washington.”  

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

The Town of Fairfield is a small farming community in southeast Spokane County, located 30 miles south of Spokane and provides municipal services to town residents including a modern waste water treatment plant.  The town has an ongoing commitment and goal to upgrade its infrastructure and technology to best serve the town residents and enlisted the expertise of Apollo Solutions Group to support their goals.

“Apollo Solutions Group has extensive experience with small rural cities, towns, and school districts throughout Washington State and the Pacific Northwest on Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Projects such as the one with the Town of Fairfield. Receiving a grant like the one awarded by the Energy Technology Board makes all the difference in the world to these small rural communities. If the Town of Fairfield didn’t receive this generous grant from TransAlta Coal Transition Board, this project wouldn’t have been possible.” – Mike Fuentes, Division Manager, Apollo Solutions Group

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board Supports the Providence Health Care Foundation,

Centralia, (August 27, 2019) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Board is pleased to announce a grant award to the Providence Health Care Foundation to support the installation of a 99kW roof top solar project on the Providence Centralia Hospital.  The Foundation will receive $238,036 from the Energy Technology Board to help fund the replacement of a 25-year old roof which has increasingly required expensive and temporary patching. The new roof will protect the integrity of the hospital building; increase sustainability of the hospital facility, while reducing their carbon footprint; and reduce overhead operating costs and directing revenues to patient care.

The Washington made roof mount system will be installed on the hospital’s flat roof and is expected to produce approximately 94,050kWh annually toward electricity usage at the Centralia hospital and reduce the hospital’s greenhouse carbon dioxide emissions by 38,316 metric tons over the next 25 years.

“The Centralia Coal Transition Board is proud to have the opportunity to bring an alternative energy project to Providence Centralia Hospital, our largest employer in Lewis County”, said Matt Matayoshi, board member. “We look forward to seeing the commencement and completion of the project and learning about the positive impacts not only for the hospital, but for patients.

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The company is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

The Providence Health Care Foundation supports, among other Providence facilities, Providence Centralia Hospital, a 128-bed, not-for-profit hospital providing emergency care, diagnostic, cancer, birthing and surgical services, providing nearly 5,000 hospital admissions and in excess of 260,000 outpatient visits annually.

 “We are tremendously grateful for the investment from TransAlta and this grant,” said Dr. Kevin Caserta, site administrator for Providence Centralia Hospital, who also sits on the Foundation board. “This project helps us continue to move toward our vision of Health for a Better World, which includes overall environmental stewardship.”

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, businesses, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

Media Inquiries:                                                          

Email: coaltransitionboards@transalta.com

Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board supports energy upgrades for Riverside Fire Authority,

Centralia, (July 15, 2019) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board is pleased to announce it has approved a grant to improve energy conservation, reduce operating costs and optimize building use and performance for the Riverside Fire Authority. The project will replace antiquated heating ventilation, air conditioning and water heating systems at the downtown Centralia Fire Station and the Fords Prairie Fire Station. 

The grant amount of $300,000 will allow the Riverside Fire Authority to realize optimal production and energy use and, provide the opportunity to return the buildings to a state which supports the 24-hour career firefighters staffed at both locations and provides shelter for emergency personnel and civilians.

“The Weatherization Board has invested millions of dollars into the local community to support energy efficiency projects over the last several years” said Jeff Yanish, board member. “The upgrade projects proposed by the Riverside Fire Authority serve two primary purposes, providing an energy efficient environment for firefighters, EMS personnel and at times, for community members during emergency situations and second, they will see a reduction in energy use and costs associated with maintenance and monthly bills.”

The Weatherization Board was formed as part of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025.

Receiving the grant from the Centralia Coal Transition board is a tremendous benefit to our Department and the citizens of the greater Centralia area” said Michael Kytta, Fire Chief. “The 24 hour staffed fire stations that we all depend on will gain improved energy conservation, lower operating costs and greater capacity year-round to serve the public and our personnel. Without this grant these improvements would not be possible.”

The Riverside Fire Authority (RFA) began operations on January 1, 2008 when the City of Centralia Fire Department and Lewis County Fire District 12 combined forces. Today the RFA encompasses 184 square miles and provides fire and EMS protection for 23,320 residents. The RFA has 22 career and 45 volunteer fire fighters, two career staff and 6 fire stations.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due Dec. 31, 2023.  The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.