Reducing diesel consumption, noise and pollution at Nemaiah Valley School.

November 10, 2020

Naghtaneqed Elementary Junior Secondary School is located in Nemaiah Valley, approximately three hours southwest from Williams Lake. In a remote area far from the electrical grid, this school enrolls about twenty students of Chilcotin First Nations ancestry in Kindergarten through Grade 10. Chilcotin Language is taught as the second language and there is a strong focus on integrating cultural teachings and activities throughout the curriculum.

For over thirty years, diesel-electric generators have been the sole source of energy to the school; a reality for most remote communities and one that introduces noise and pollution to the schoolyard. And at one time the school curriculum had to be curtailed in order to meet budget constraints – a steep cost attributed directly to the high cost of energy. The community and parents rallied to gain support from the administrators, who responded to this call and supplied funding to build a hybrid energy system with a high penetration of solar energy.


“The final installation reflects Hakai’s continued commitment to good workmanship and to the client needs, with a well organized installation that was on time and on budget.” – Dan Leblanc, Falcon Engineering


In July of 2019, the School District invested in a hybrid energy system that integrated
solar energy production, advanced energy storage and an expandable inverter platform. Utilizing 140 high-output solar PV panels, a battery energy storage system and a hybrid of inverter technology types, this system was designed to offset diesel consumption by reducing generator operation by 6900 hours each year, an 80% reduction. It is anticipated that the school district will recoup its investment in 7.5 years through a reduction of fuel consumption of approximately 38,400 L every year, plus generator maintenance and replacement cost avoidance.


System Performance Highlights

System TypeAnnual photovoltaic energy generationRenewable energy generation proportionReduction in diesel fuel consumption
by generator
Annual genset run time reductionLifetime reductions in CO2
emissions over 25 yrs
Micro-grid60,000 kWh44%38,400 L/ yr6,900 hrs.2,534,000 kg
(equivalent to
19,500,000 km
driven by a car)
Clean Energy BC
2019 Community
Improvement Award