Superior’s Solar Garden Gets Green Light From Regulators
The plans to construct a solar garden in Superior have advanced as the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin okayed the project at a meeting on October 7. Now that approval has been granted, the actual construction can start - with an estimated timeline of this upcoming spring for the ground breaking.
The 470-kilowatt solar garden will be constructed on the north end of Heritage Park, along 28th Street in Superior. Once built and operational, the solar garden should generate enough electricity to power 115 homes - according to news sources. The plant will be the first that Superior Water Light and Power has sourced since the Winslow Generating Station closed off the grid in 1981.
The solar garden will work as a mutually-beneficial operation between Superior Water Light and Power and customers who buy subscriptions. The utility will sell 25-year agreements to customers. The revenue from those subscriptions will be used to fund the construction and pay for maintenance on the solar garden. As a trade-off, those subscribers will reap the benefit in the electric energy generate by the solar panels in the form of Solar Renewable Energy Credits. Those credits can be used as "monthly credit[s] for solar energy based on their subscription". While the term is 25 years, customers can leave the program at any time and without penalty.
Superior Water Light and Power is contacting individuals who had expressed interest in ownership in the solar energy garden. They're also reaching out to businesses who had expressed initial interest to see if impacts from the pandemic might have changed their business models (and their eventual interest in the program).