Redwood Electric Cooperative Community Solar
Members interested in green energy or looking to lock in future electricity prices can participate in Redwood Electric Cooperative's Community Solar project. Redwood Electric developed the community solar project to give members that wanted a portion of their energy to come from a renewable source options they could participate in. All the electricity created by the community solar array is used by Redwood Electric members.
What is Community Solar? A Redwood Electric Cooperative's Community Solar project allows members to purchase a portion of the electric generation from a solar array located next to Highwater Ethanol outside of Lamberton. Members have two participation plans to choose from. Participants do not own any of the panels or infrastructure.
What are the benefits?
1. Nothing is installed on your home or property. You have nothing to maintain.
2. Renewable energy from your member owned electric cooperative.
3. You can control the cost of future electricity purchases.
4. Two Convenient Options.
5. Participate with as little as one panel, with a limit of 10 panels per member.
How does it work? Members get either a kWh credit on their monthly bill or pay $.14/kWh based on their portion of the total system production. What you get depends on which option you select. Members do not own panels. Limit 10 panels per member.
How are kWh's assigned to participants? The solar array consists of 448 panels. Each month the total production Redwood Electric Cooperative receives from the array is divided by 448 to determine how many kWh's each panel is allocated. For example: March of 2016 total array production was 18,816. The kWh allocation would have been 42kWh's per panel. The estimated production per panel is around 500kWh's a year. Monthly production will vary by season, with the summer months creating the most electricity and winter months delivering the least.
Renewable Energy Credits (REC's): This project is registered with the Midwest Renewable Energy Tracking System (M-RETS). Basin Electric Power Cooperative, a Redwood Electric power supplier, is the owner of all REC's. The REC's are being used to help South Central Electric meet its Minnesota renewable energy goals. Participating members do not receive renewable energy credits.
Participation Option A: Purchase per panel
Members pay $1,175 per panel (members do not own the panels). Members sign a 20 year license agreement. Participating members get a percentage of the total solar array production each month based on how many panel units they purchased. A kWh credit would appear each month on their bill for a period of 20 years. It is estimated that each panel will produce approximately 500 kWh’s per year. Members can transfer their contract to any Redwood Electric member if they move before the 20 years is up.
Participation Option B: Purchase per kWh
Members pay $.14/kWh each month for their portion of the array’s production. There is no down payment or contract. The price does not change. Members would be locking in a portion of their electric purchases at a price of $.14/kWh until the program ends on December 31, 2037. Members can leave the program at any time but cannot transfer the rate to other members.
What is the breakeven or return? This is not an income producing investment. Members do not own the panels. Any financial benefit will depend on future costs of electricity. You will be purchasing energy from the Redwood Electric Cooperative Community solar array at $1175/panel or $.14/kWh. The value you get per kWh will be based on the Redwood Electric monthly kWh price now and in the future. As the cost of electricity increases the value of your community solar kWh credits or purchases increases. Limit 10 panels per member.