Solar power to provide HP's HQ with 20% of its electricity

All 4,000 solar panels will be on the Palo Alto's company rooftop

HP's Palo Alto campus is about to be outfitted with more than 4,000 solar panels, enough to offset about 20% of the facility's current electricity usage.

The solar power project is HP's largest to date; the company estimated it will save $1 million in energy expenses over the next two decades.

HP would not disclose the cost of the project.

A typical solar power plant.

An HP spokesperson said the new solar installation is one part of "a broad commitment to protecting the environment."

HP said it has set an "aggressive goal" to reduce emissions from facilities and vehicles (known as "scope one" or owned emissions), and emissions from outside power sources from which it purchases energy (known as "scope two" emissions).

The company hopes to reduce these emissions by 20% before 2020, as compared to its 2010 baseline.

The federal government categorizes emissions in three "scopes."

Along with the City of Palo Alto Utilities, HP has contracted with SolarCity, an outside vendor, which will install, maintain and continue to own the roof-top solar panels. HP has signed a 20-year agreement to purchase that power from SunCity.

HP's system will be Palo Alto's largest to date, increasing the amount of local solar power installed there by approximately 21%.

Lucas Mearian covers consumer data storage, consumerization of IT, mobile device management, renewable energy, telematics/car tech and entertainment tech for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed. His e-mail address is lmearian@computerworld.com.

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