Every day of sunshine makes a dent in the power bills at Canada Ticket's factory in North Langley.
The facility is now generating about 53 kilowatts of power from the sun, thanks to a solar power grid installed on the roof.
A short distance from the whizzing cars of Highway One, Canada Ticket CEO Wally Robins said it's just the latest in a series of energy efficiency and green measures.
Walking through the factory causes lights to come on and off, thanks to motion sensors. All outside lighting was switched to LEDs last year, to save power, and the plant is working to prevent any wasted water at all from leaving, recycling everything but what comes out of the bathroom sinks.
However, the solar panels are the largest investment so far, about $160,000 to $170,000.
Robins said with depreciation, they'll be paid off in about 10 years from savings. They'll also put power back into the BC Hydro grid when the plant isn't running on sunny weekends.
"This is the largest system to date that's connected to B.C. Hydro," said Raj Gurm, CEO of P2 Solar.
There are a handful of systems of a larger or similar size, but those are in isolated First Nations communities off the main power grid.
All the panels are made in Canada, he said.
Once set up, the system has no moving parts and doesn't require a lot of maintenance.
"It just starts making electricity when the sun comes up and stops when it goes down," said Gurm.
Robins said the system is hooked up to the most power-hungry machinery in the plant, and will feed into that first. After that, it goes into the next machine, and the next. On the weekends, power flows out of the plant and BC Hydro pays them.
@ Copyright 2013