Channel Lumber has served the Bay Area with lumber, milling, and assembly for over 50 years. Their 14-acre facility in Richmond, California is known for its extensive inventory, prompt delivery, product versatility, and customer satisfaction. As the largest lumber delivery fleet in the Bay Area, Channel Lumber is committed to environmentally sustainable methods of timber production. In 2016, they partnered with CivicSolar and Forecast Energy to implement an AI-driven energy forecasting platform that would replace 90% of their grid power with efficient solar PV production. The project was highlighted by Sharp's Smart Storage demand response battery technology.
"It's a privilege to have been selected by Forecast Energy for the Channel Lumber project and by CivicSolar as a distribution partner, which will see them promote our SmartStorage system to their network of 3,500 customers," said Carl Mansfield, General Manager and Founder of Sharp's U.S. based Energy Systems and Services Group. "CivicSolar will broaden our reach to their vast network of customers in the solar industry and will bring our SmartStorage solution to customers that are facing expensive peak demand charges. We anticipate teaming with both CivicSolar and Forecast Energy on future solar plus SmartStorage projects."
Sharp's intelligent energy storage solution paired with solar PV systems works synergistically to reduce energy usage for commercial properties. Sharp's SmartStorage system is designed to pull power from the SmartStorage batteries rather than from the utility at the times of highest demand (which are the most expensive rates) and is particularly suited for properties in parts of California where commercial utility customers are paying up to 50 percent of their energy bills toward demand charges. Channel Lumber paid $172,385 in demand charges alone over a one year period.
"We provide solar developers and installers with the products and services they need to succeed, so bringing a new energy storage technology into the mix requires a high level of evaluation," said Stuart Fox, VP of Technical Sales for CivicSolar. "Sharp's SmartStorage system is available with a 10-year demand reduction performance guarantee and asset management service agreement. With Sharp's solid reputation backing their system, our installer network will have confidence in Sharp's SmartStorage solution and their 10-year service agreement. That is already being demonstrated by our initial installation."
A detailed analysis of Channel Lumber's energy usage profile estimates that the solar plus SmartStorage system will bring $160,466 in energy and demand savings annually - an estimated 62 percent reduction in Channel Lumber's total bill. Forecast Energy selected Sharp's SmartStorage system and was the integrator and installer for the entire project.
"After evaluating a number of systems, we chose solar plus Sharp's SmartStorage energy storage system because it provides our customer with better, cleaner power along with greater flexibility in their energy management and it integrates incredibly well with our solution stack," said Paul O'Sullivan, COO of Forecast Energy. "We are thankful for the team at CivicSolar for bringing us high quality and industry-leading energy products, and in this case a reliable, brand-name solution backed by a 10-year performance guarantee, giving us confidence in our selection."