LA CROSSE, Wis., Feb. 24, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Dairyland Power Cooperative has finalized agreements with two developers to purchase over 15 MW of renewable energy from multiple new utility-scale photovoltaic solar facilities in Wisconsin.
"Dairyland is a cooperative dedicated to providing safe, reliable and sustainable energy. As Dairyland celebrates our 75th anniversary this year, we are excited to announce very significant solar generation plans that far surpass current solar resources in the state," said Barbara Nick, President and CEO.
Last year, Dairyland issued a request for proposals (RFP) for solar generation resources. At this point, Dairyland has power purchase agreements in place with two solar developers—groSolar (White River Junction, Vt.) and SoCore Energy (Chicago, Ill.)—for 12 new solar facilities to be sited in Wisconsin. Dairyland is also continuing negotiations for additional solar resources in its service territory, with further project announcements anticipated in the near future.
The solar installations will range between .5 MW to 2.5 MW in scale. These facilities will be tracking systems which follow the path of the sun to increase energy production. Together, the solar facilities will be able to produce enough renewable energy to power over 2,500 homes.
As a cooperative initiative, the solar facilities will be built in the service areas of Dairyland's member electric cooperatives. The advantages of multiple projects in separate locations include: diversified weather, distributed grid infrastructure impacts and locally-based renewable energy.
"Dairyland's leadership role with renewable energy projects supports our strategic direction to diversify generation resources. This announcement follows a very robust and competitive RFP process that will provide a win-win for our membership and the environment," said Nick.
The developers will install, own, operate and maintain the solar facilities. The first projects are expected to become operational this summer, with others continuing to come online into the fall.
Below is a listing (by developer) of the proposed locations, projected scale and local electric cooperative:
- Phillips, Wis., 2.5 MW (Price Electric Cooperative)
- Viola, Wis., .5 MW (Richland Electric Cooperative)
- Roberts, Wis., 2 MW (St. Croix Electric Cooperative)
- Conrath, Wis., 1 MW (Jump River Electric Cooperative)
- Necedah, Wis., 1.5 MW (Oakdale Electric Cooperative)
- Menomonie, Wis., 1 MW (Dunn Energy Cooperative)
- Medford, Wis., 2 MW (Taylor Electric Cooperative)
- Liberty Pole, Wis., 1 MW (Vernon Electric Cooperative)
- Hillsboro, Wis., 1 MW (Vernon Electric Cooperative)
- Town of Hallie, Wis., 1 MW (Eau Claire Energy Cooperative)
- Eastman, Wis., 1 MW (Scenic Rivers Energy Cooperative)
- Arcadia, Wis., 1 MW (Riverland Energy Cooperative)
Although these projects constitute Dairyland's largest solar investments to date, Dairyland also purchases energy from major solar installations (Westby, Wis., Oronoco, Minn., and Galena, Ill.) and supports 10 member cooperative community solar installations, with more planned. In addition, there are 700 consumer-owned distributed generation solar installations located in Dairyland's service area.
Dairyland, its member cooperatives, groSolar and SoCore Energy look forward to working with residents and project stakeholders as we work cooperatively to develop these projects.
Dairyland Power Cooperative
With headquarters in La Crosse, Wis., Dairyland provides wholesale electricity to 25 member distribution cooperatives and 17 municipal utilities. A Touchstone Energy Cooperative, Dairyland's service area encompasses 62 counties in four states (Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois). Dairyland's generation resources include coal, natural gas, hydro, solar, wind and landfill gas. For more information, visit www.dairynet.com.
groSolar is an industry-leading, large commercial and utility-scale solar developer and engineering, procurement and construction firm. For over 17 years, groSolar has been dedicated to high quality, on time, and on budget project performance. With numerous award winning multi-megawatt projects and over 2,000 installations nationwide, groSolar's experience spans a broad spectrum of applications. These include the development and installation of solar projects at brownfields/landfills, commercial, educational, municipal utility facilities and manufacturing plants. groSolar provides turnkey services for solar projects from development services and financing through construction, product procurement, and long-term operations and maintenance. Visit www.groSolar.com.
SoCore Energy (www.SoCoreEnergy.com) is a market leader in cooperative, commercial and industrial solar portfolio development. With hundreds of solar solutions designed and installed across dozens of states, SoCore offers cooperatives, multisite retailers, REITs and industrial companies portfolio-wide solar and energy storage solutions that provide energy cost savings and carbon reduction opportunities. As a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of Edison International, SoCore combines Edison's Fortune 500 stability with entrepreneurial creativity in order to provide energy solutions that our customers genuinely want and need.
SOURCE Dairyland Power Cooperative