Sidelights

Home Yard Cottages

Transitions’ Renewable Energy Projects
Benefit Low-Income Populations


Transitions, Spokane, WA, is celebrating its third solar project since 2018, continuing to demonstrate how individuals and families with a low income and who are formerly homeless can benefit from this technology.

Since 2018, Transitions’ 24 Home Yard Cottages (HYC) have been providing permanent, supportive housing units for formerly homeless families and individuals. Fifteen of these 24 cottages have solar panels installed. From 2020–2021, these 15 cottages generated 67,300 kWh per year, which is about 50 percent of their total annual electricity consumption. Six of the 15 cottages are net-zero, with four of those cottages generating more power than they are consuming—this translates to HYC residents having no power bills.

Transitions’ Women’s Hearth is a drop-in day center that has provided a safe space for women in downtown Spokane since 1991. Solar panels were installed at this site in 2020. Women’s Hearth has generated 21,400 kWh this past year, about 50 percent of its annual electric consumption. The electric savings at HYC and the Women’s Hearth allow the money that would have gone to paying electric bills to be put back into Transitions’ programs.

In December 2021, solar panels were completed at Transitions’ Transitional Living Center (TLC) with a system size of 40 kW. This will save approximately $116,000 over the solar system lifespan and will prevent 2 million lbs. of CO2 from entering the atmosphere. Transitions looks forward to the savings these panels will bring, as well as to the positive impact on its environmental footprint.

Transitions’ childcare program, EduCare, is in the process of becoming the fourth solar project for the organization, either in 2022 or 2023.

Transitions’ most recent solar project at TLC was made possible by partner organizations RE-volv, Spark Northwest, New Priorities Foundation,
Gonzaga Sustainable Energy Club, and Dynamic Solar Corp.

Click for Spectrum May 2022 Index

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