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  • Tuesday, January 2, 2018

    Where Community Solar Is Working

    Chippewa County in Minnesota is solar industry's latest frontier

    Tom Cherveny, January 2, 2018 (Duluth News Tribune)

    “…[The latest frontier in the solar power industry's growth in Minnesota is] where workers are completing the third of three solar garden projects undertaken in the past year…Berkshire Hathaway Energy, working with Geronimo Energy, is developing the solar gardens as part of Xcel Energy's Solar Rewards Community Program.…[The companies have now developed three projects representing 8 MW of capacity and each] megawatt can power about 1,300 average Minnesota homes…[Xcel Energy] offers the country's largest community solar garden program] with 246 megawatts in service, and more than 400 megawatts of projects in the design or construction phase…The program allows customers to buy solar panels in the gardens, and receive a credit on their electric bills for the power produced by them. Originally, many community solar gardens required customers to pay the upfront costs of a panel, perhaps as much as $8,000, and recoup their investment over time…Current programs are more popular, allowing consumers a pay as-you-go option [with a full pay off of panels that produce for 25 years or more] in anywhere from 10 to 15 years…” click here for more

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