SunEdison Inc. completed two solar power systems totaling 1.2 MW AC for the Metropolitan Council of the Twin Cities’ wastewater treatment plant in partnership with Oak Leaf Energy Partners, a national solar developer. SunEdison constructed and financed the installations and will be the long-term owner and operator of the systems.
The construction of the solar systems was funded in part by a $2 million grant from the Xcel Energy Renewable Development Fund. The fund is designed to sponsor projects that improve the environment, increase renewable energy use and create jobs. The grant supports a 1,000 kW solar system for the liquid treatment facility of the plant and another 280 kW solar system for the on-site sludge drying facility, bringing the total installed solar capacity at the wastewater treatment plant to 1,280 kW.
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“These grants serve as a critical tool in the creation of renewable energy solutions,” said Adam Duininck, Metropolitan Council chair. “The project developed by Oak Leaf and SunEdison will bring clean, renewable energy to our wastewater treatment plant while creating jobs, increasing the tax base, and promoting a more livable environment. We’re proud to continue advancing our mission of sustainability. In addition, we expect to be able to pass some savings on to wastewater ratepayers across the region.”
The solar power systems are expected to generate enough clean energy each year to power 10 percent of the wastewater treatment plant’s annual electricity needs. Operation and maintenance of the solar power plants will be performed by SunEdison Services, which provides global asset management, monitoring and reporting services.
— Solar Builder magazine