During a ceremony in Kearney, city of Kearney officials, NPPD representatives and Chicago-based solar developer, SoCore, lauded an upcoming solar project that will be the biggest built in Nebraska, to date.
“You have to have ‘vision’ to live in Kearney,” Kearney Account Manager and Kearney Mayor Stan Clouse said. “We’re doing [this project] to meet the needs of our customers who are interested in renewable energy and to market Kearney’s tech park.”
To be located in the city’s Tech oNE Crossing technology park, the project will provide 5.76 megawatts of electricity to the community of Kearney when it comes on-line this fall. SoCore will sell electricity to NPPD, whose retail customers can then opt to subscribe and purchase renewable energy from the solar power.
“Later this year, NPPD will work together with Kearney leaders to market solar energy shares from the facility,” said President and CEO Pat Pope, who will discuss NPPD’s participation in the project at today’s event. “These solar shares will be available for purchase by anyone who is a Kearney resident and pays an electric bill to NPPD. By purchasing solar shares, you are making a personal commitment to support a renewable energy investment in the state.”
During today’s celebration, Kearney City Manager Mike Morgan will discuss the finer details of the project, including contract negotiations and the city’s risk analysis. Throughout the celebration, comments will also be made on behalf of SoCore Energy and Buffalo County Economic Development Council, and there will be a chance for the public to ask questions about the project.
“This project will be the third community solar facility to be part of NPPD’s SunWise Community Solar umbrella, a program launched earlier this year,” said Pope. “SunWise projects give NPPD’s retail customer communities an opportunity to bring benefits of a local, renewable energy resource into their own backyard, and Kearney’s vision to embrace renewable energy through such a partnership is to be commended.”
To “dot the i’s and cross the t’s” on today’s celebration, an agreement-signing will close out today’s event and take the project closer to fruition. The city of Kearney will sign a community solar agreement with NPPD, and NPPD will sign a power purchase agreement with SoCore. Kearney will also sign an agreement with SoCore to lease the land in the technology park.
“NPPD is proud of its long-standing partnership with the city of Kearney and welcomes the opportunity to continue this relationship for many years to come,” said Pope. “We also look forward to working with SoCore Energy.”