A new Minnesota community solar garden has just been completed in St. Cloud. The 1,376-kilowatt facility was developed by New Energy Equity, which has effectively expanded its reach through the midwest state. New Energy Equity’s new project is part of a portfolio of more than 150 programs that total approximately 185-megawatts of solar capacity. According to New Energy Equity, the completion of the St. Cloud facility is partially thanks to Impact Power Solutions, Gordian Energy Systems, EMS, the City of Minnetonka, and Cargill Incorporated.
At the head of the Minnesota community solar garden, New Energy Equity was responsible for financing the project. During construction, it also continued to manage the development of the facility. Due to New Energy’s involvement and management of financing and construction, the city didn’t have to pay upfront costs. For a continued smooth transition as the site becomes operational, New Energy will work with Cargill Incorporated and the City of Minnetonka. Based on the power it will generate, the facility should offset nearly 2,000 megawatt-hours annually or the same as around 160 homes.
As New Energy CEO and President Matthew Hankey explains, the concept of community solar is to aid the local community and organizations. Through the solar energy generated by the site, the St. Cloud installation will be able to provide low-cost energy to small businesses and organizations and offer money-saving perks on their monthly utility bills. Unlike costly rooftop panels, with community solar, there is no sizable investment needed from participants. Users just need to subscribe to the facility to see the benefits start coming in.
New Energy was founded in 2013 and is based in Annapolis, MD. It is a solar developer and financier with projects found across the Midwest United States. Since opening its doors, New Energy has developed more than 250-megawatts of solar gardens.