Taiwan’s first renewable energy prison is set to begin generating power this year, with an estimated capacity of one million kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year. Pingtung Prison, which has decided to harness the county’s plentiful sunlight by installing solar panels on its roof, is expected to not only increase its revenue by selling solar power, but also to be able to cool the building in the summer.
The prison has signed a 20-year contract with a solar power company to build solar panels which would cover its roof of more than 10,000 square meters. The project is expected to be completed before March. Parts of the roof where solar panels have already been installed will begin generating power first.
The solar power project is expected to bring many benefits. In addition to increasing the government’s revenue, the solar panel can help lower inside temperatures by two to three degrees Celsius. Furthermore, the inmates can learn to install and maintain the solar power facilities and get paid for their work.
Since Pingtung Prison is the first prison in Taiwan to use green energy, the Agency of Corrections will evaluate the performance of its solar power project and introduce the project to other prisons and detention centers in Southern Taiwan. While Penghu Prison is to carry out a similar solar power project, Pingtung Detention Center is also planning on issuing an invitation to tenders to develop renewable energy at the center.
Source article: http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/lang/print/2017/02/08/2003664533
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