Some good news from California’s Central Valley: A small rural school district that made the switch to a $5 million solar power system is saving enough green to reinstate the music program it had to cut back in 2009.

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From the Fresno Beehive blog:

How did Firebaugh-Las Deltas, a 2,300-student district, swing a deal like this?

The district got help from a consulting firm to figure out if its payments on the loan would be less than the cost of its utility bills.

The numbers reportedly show a $9 million savings over the next 25 years, said [Superintendent Russell] Freitas, who worked with SolarCity, a national company with a Fresno office. The system will be paid off in 15 years, he said.

During the first five years, the savings will be about $900,000, said Freitas.

That’s enough for keyboard classes, choir, drama, band, and more for hundreds of San Joaquin Valley kids — and all thanks to central California’s scorching rays.