Drake Landing Solar Community
Consisting of 52 houses, the Drake Landing Solar Community (DLSC) is the first large-scale solar community in North America to use borehole thermal energy storage to heat homes. The project is located in the Town of Okotoks, Alberta, 15 minutes south of Calgary.
The project conceived by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan). To see the DLSC through to fruition, NRCan established partnerships with innovative, environmentally conscious companies that had longstanding, credible reputations within their industries. Ground was broken at the DLSC in the spring of 2005 with a completion date of fall 2005
Since its inception, the solar system has been providing well above 90 per cent of the space heating requirements. The last few years saw efficiencies of up to 98 per cent, requiring only a two per cent top-up from natural gas. Homeowners pay a monthly fixed rate, about $70 to maintain the infrastructure. The community is revenue neutral. The real benefit comes from the reduced greenhouse gas emissions. The space heating system cuts about four to five tonnes of greenhouse gas, per household, every year.