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Spokane County could start generating solar and hydro power at wastewater treatment facility

Jul 26, 2023

Spokane County has hired a consultant to figure out if it makes financial sense to operate the wastewater treatment plant less wastefully.

The Spokane County Commission last week unanimously agreed to hire McKinstry to assess the feasibility of multiple renewable energy proposals at the Spokane County Regional Water Reclamation Facility.

For $81,000, McKinstry will study whether the county would save money by adding solar panels, building a miniature hydroelectric dam and selling natural gas. Depending on how the first study goes, the county might also pay for a more thorough follow-up analysis that would cost $276,000.

Adding solar panels at the wastewater plant would be a relatively straightforward investment. The county could install enough of them to produce a megawatt of electricity on the 20-acre site and power the entire facility when the sun's out.

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