“We are pleased to announce this significant project,” said Greg Miller, president and CEO of Dakota Electric. “It is solar connected to our grid for the sole benefit of our members.”
Dakota Electric is collaborating with Great River Energy to build this project, which will directly benefit the cooperative’s membership. The output from this renewable solar project will offset the need to receive electricity from fossil fuel sources, assuring 1 MW of clean, renewable electricity to the member-owners of Dakota Electric.
“Electric cooperatives continue to lead the way in efforts to develop distributed solar energy systems,” said Jon Brekke, vice president and chief market officer at Great River Energy. “We’re delighted to partner with Dakota Electric Association in further support of renewable energy leadership by local cooperatives.”
The project is 50 times larger than a previous project built by Great River Energy on behalf of Dakota Electric that is located in Farmington at the intersection of Denmark and County Road 50.
“We have wanted to add large solar projects to our wholesale power mix for some time and are glad that we can now announce this project,” Miller said. “We are already in the process of trying to permit another megawatt of solar for a total of 2 megawatts.”
This 1-MW solar project includes approximately 3,600 solar panels on 5 acres of land and will provide enough electricity to serve about 150 average residential members.
Preliminary work will be done on the property this fall with construction taking place in late winter. The co-op expects to energize the solar array in the spring.
A dedication event will be held once the project is completed.
About Great River Energy: Great River Energy is a not-for-profit cooperative that provides wholesale electric service to 28 distribution cooperatives in Minnesota and parts of Wisconsin. Those member cooperatives distribute electricity to approximately 665,000 member consumers. Great River Energy generates electricity from a variety of resources, including coal, natural gas and renewables. With $4 billion in assets, Great River Energy is the second largest electric power supplier in Minnesota and one of the largest generation and transmission cooperatives in the United States. Learn more at greatriverenergy.com.
About Dakota Electric Association: A customer-owned, non-profit utility since 1937, Dakota Electric Association provides electricity to more than 104,000 members throughout Dakota County and portions of Goodhue, Rice and Scott counties. Dakota Electric, a Touchstone Energy Cooperative, serves its member-owners with integrity, accountability, innovation and commitment to community.