Tuesday, January 15, 2019

We Energies launches largest approved solar energy program in Wisconsin

The new year is looking bright with more renewable energy thanks to an exciting new We Energies program called Solar Now. The Solar Now program will create 35 megawatts (MW) of clean energy, equivalent to taking nearly 30,000 cars off the road. This program is the largest approved solar energy project in Wisconsin.

Through the Solar Now program, We Energies will pay commercial, industrial, government and nonprofit customers to host solar panels on their roofs and property. We Energies will handle all installation, maintenance and operation of the solar equipment – providing a turnkey solution to customers wanting to participate in renewable generation.

While the program is aimed at large commercial and government host customers, all customers will benefit. The solar energy that is produced will help reduce fuel costs to all customers while also maintaining fuel diversity and reducing carbon emissions.

Solar Now is a pilot program that caps participation at 35 MW, with 10 MW reserved for nonprofit and government entities. A number of customers, including local governments and school districts, have already expressed strong interest in the program.

“Partnering with We Energies on this program would provide an opportunity for the school district to reduce its carbon footprint and reduce some of its energy costs,” David Weber, president of the Northland Pines School District, wrote in a letter to the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSCW) in support of the program.

New Berlin School District Chief Finance and Operations Officer Roger Dickson also wrote a letter of support: “The school district will benefit from the partnership through the opportunity to provide ‘real life’ experience to students on the production of solar power, including measurement and assessment of power and the distribution thereof.”

Outside of the benefits for customers, the Solar Now pilot will provide We Energies with valuable insight into operating distributed solar generation, experience that can be used in the future on other projects.

The PSCW gave We Energies the go-ahead to move forward with testing Solar Now and another new renewable energy program in December.

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