Grid-edge innovation of another order
With one award-winning solar-plus-storage project under its belt, the Village of Minster,
Ohio — population, just under 3,000 — thought adding a community solar project to its portfolio would be the logical next step. That is, it seemed logical until Dannon, the town’s largest energy user and employer, decided to add a 280,000-square-foot distribution center to its already massive yogurt-making plant, and wanted to power it with clean, solar energy.
Minster tackled the challenge by switching the community solar project to commercial. The town is also planning a third project, with additional storage to create a microgrid and sell power into the regional wholesale electricity market.
Small town, big vision
In 2016, Minster became the first small public utility to pair solar, and storage demand, serving as a model for the kind of public-private partnerships that are needed to advance the combination of these technologies. The town’s story underlines why, sometimes, designing a successful community solar program means knowing when to put a project on hold, while staying focused on customers’ needs, shifting market conditions and the bottom line.
Download the Research Report here.
Find out more: Watch SEPA’s video on Minster’s successful strategies for expanding its solar and storage projects here.
ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING
- DOE offers funding for long-duration storage, American Public Power Association Blog
- Mosaic, Sunrun lead residential solar finance, PV Magazine UISA
- Renewable energy advocates, consumer group happy with tweaks to Wisconsin Focus on Energy program, La Crosse Tribune
- Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy Program
- How Virginia Localities Will Get to 100% Renewable Energy, The Energy Collective
- 20 Years of Solar PV — Changes, Challenges and Growth, Renewable Energy World
- Trending in solar development: Community-scale solar market is the next frontier, Solar Power World
- Solar at the crossroads: Is utility-scale, distributed or both the way to go?, Utility Dive
- Report details high level of wind power PPAs in Q1 2018, American Public Power Association
- Massive new wind farm coming to Adair County, KCCI Des Moines
- IEA sees bigger role for offshore wind to meet climate goals, Axios
- Are Public Objections to Wind Farms Overblown?, Renewable Energy World
- Taxes, Trump and Tariffs: 7 Takeaways From the Midwest Solar Expo, Midwest Energy News
- Powerful Investors Push Big Companies to Plan for Climate Change, Scientific American
The Brownfields Utilization, Investment, and Local Development (BUILD) Act of 2018, which was part of the omnibus spending bill, does not significantly overhaul the old Brownfields program, rather it “builds” on it by:
- Significantly increasing the program’s funding and ability to participate in the Brownfields programs;
- Incentivizes the redevelopment of contaminated properties adjacent to water or those which will promote renewable energy; and
- Expands the exceptions from liability under CERCLA.