Officials flipped the switch on Wednesday, Sept. 27 for the rooftop solar panels on the Woodlawn Fire Station that will provide 15 percent of the building’s total electric consumption, save the county $6,400 the first year and reduce the carbon emissions by 34 metric tons in another step for the environment.
Chairman Jeff McKay looked at the overall picture, helping the staff at the station too. “It’s important that we invest in them, invest in the county and invest in the planet,” he said. The Woodlawn Station and the Reston Station were the first two stations in the county to take this step with the solar panels but it is just a start.
“There’s a lot more to come,” said Supervisor Dan Storck (D-Mount Vernon) who has been part of the green initiative that the county started in 2018. “We’re on our way to a brighter future, a healthier future,” Storck said.
Flipping the switch was the green equivalent of cutting the ribbon here, so McKay and Storck grabbed the large silver power switch on the side of the building and went at it. Suddenly things were happening with the solar panels.
The project cost $469,257, the county said, but it is eligible for a federal tax credit and should generate savings to offset the cost within 22 years.
These two fire stations going solar isn’t the only “green,” event the county celebrated in the last few months. In late August, Fairfax County launched its first all-electric trash truck as a start in that direction too. “This is an investment in our environment,” said Fairfax County Chairman Jeff McKay when they officially plugged in the truck at the Cinder Bed Garage.
The stations and trash trucks are part of the Fairfax Green Initiatives launched a few years ago to begin to stem the growth of greenhouse gases which are dramatically altering our environment, our world and the people, places and property in our communities, the county said, driving climate change and more severe weather..