TransAlta Coal Transition Board Awards $320k to the Town of Friday Harbor

Grant to help build solar project at the wastewater treatment plant

The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board approved a $320,000 grant to the Town of Friday Harbor to support the installation of a 100kW ground based photovoltaic solar array at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Producing renewable energy, this 100kW solar project will produce approximately 95,180kW per year through a net metering agreement with Orcas Power & Light Cooperative and utilizes State of Washington manufactured solar panels. The solar project became active in May 2020.

This solar project will lower energy costs currently being incurred by the Wastewater Treatment Plant; support the town’s commitment to renewable energy; and add an asset to the town that will continue to produce and add savings after the project is fully paid.

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 Friday Harbor is a town in San Juan County, Washington and was officially incorporated in 1909.

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