Centralia Coal Transition Energy Technology Board (CCTETB) supports Centralia College solar project

For immediate release

Centralia, (April 4, 2017) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board (“CCTETB”) is pleased to announce it has approved a grant to Centralia College in the amount of $189,000.00 to support the construction of a 56kW solar photovoltaic project for the library. The renewable electrical energy produced will reduce CO2 emissions and will help offset purchased power and lower ongoing energy bills for the next 30-40 years.

“The purpose of the Energy Technology Board is to support projects in Washington State that benefit clean energy, air quality or the environment” says Bob Guenther, chair of the board. “It’s exciting for the board to be able to support this solar project. The project not only reduces emissions, it’s sustainable, lowers energy costs for the college, requires little maintenance and will provide enhanced learning for students.”

The grant amount of $189,000.00 will be leveraged with funding the college received from the Department of Commerce in the amount of $151,000.00 as well as Centralia City Light electrical energy incentives, Puget Sound Energy natural gas incentives and college funding.

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.

“Centralia College is extremely excited about this project”, says Steve Ward, Vice President, Finance and Administration, at Centralia College.  “Not only is it a great example of sustainability and stewardship, it is a partnership the college has established with the Department of Commerce, utility companies, and most notably, CCTETB who provided the majority of the funding. This will benefit our students and community for years to come.”

Founded in 1925, Centralia College is the oldest continuous operating community college in the state of Washington. The college has grown from the initial class of 15 students, to an enrollment of nearly 4,000 students. Centralia College is also home to the Pacific Northwest Center of Excellence for Clean Energy. The Center has been successful in developing partnerships with industry for placement of graduates from the Energy Program, and in securing grants for training and equipment for students.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards have been made for the past five years 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.

For more information on the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards visit:

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