Tag Archives: City of Kearney

Small as energy maker, solar farm generates big interest

By Mike Konz, The Kearney Hub

Mayor Stan Clouse said Kearney hopes its solar farm
enhances the city’s attraction among high-tech firms.

KEARNEY — Covering 53 acres in northeast Kearney and comprising 22,464 panels, the SoCore solar farm at the city of Kearney’s Tech oNE Crossing is Nebraska’s largest. Rated at 5.7 megawatts, the solar array’s generating capacity is enough to power about 900 houses or supply 5 percent of Kearney’s energy load . . . The University of Nebraska at Kearney bought 52 percent of the shares — enough to provide about 25 percent of the campus’ electrical needs. Central Community College’s Kearney Center just went online with 350 shares. That’s 5 percent of the solar farm’s capacity and enough power to cover all of the electrical needs at CCC’s $23 million, ultra-energy efficient facility in southwest Kearney. Read more here.

Photo Credit: SoCore Energy

Information Links
Developer: SoCore Energy
Installer: Interconnection Systems based in Central City, Nebraska
NPPD’s SunWise Initiative
SunWise is a community solar program available in participating Nebraska Public Power District retail communities.

Another distinguishing feature of Kearney’s Solar Farm is that it is a nationally-recognized pollinator-friendly site, benefiting local food producers. 

Photo by Rob Davis, Fresh Energy

Solar that Benefits Birds & Pollinators – Workshop & Tour

By Rob Davis, Center for Pollinators in Energy

March 8, 2018
Iain Nicolson Audubon Center at Rowe Sanctuary
44450 Elm Island Road, Gibbon, Nebraska
Facebook Live Stream

In partnership with Kearney City officials, the Iain Nicolson Audubon Center at Rowe Sanctuary, Nebraska Public Power District, and SoCore Energy, we invite you to learn more about Nebraska’s largest solar array and the benefits it provides to the community and environment.

This array is radically different from the solar photos you’ve seen from the Arizona desert. Bird- and pollinator-friendly flowers and grasses have been seeded under and around the solar panels. Planned specifically for a time when Kearney is a national destination for millions of Sandhill cranes, a panel of local and regional leaders will discuss economic development and care for nature and the land in the context of the growing trend of solar development by cooperatives around the country.

The conversation/workshop will be followed by a tour of the Kearney solar array, with a light lunch provided. The solar array tour will include opportunities for attendees to assemble boxes for native bees and broadcast a bird- and pollinator-friendly seed mix, with assistance from the Kearney Outdoor Learning Area (KOLA) high-school students.

Workshop/Conversation: 10:30 – 11:30 am
Mayor Stanley Clouse, City of Kearney
Bill Taddicken, Audubon Center
Jason Guernsey, Department of Economic Development, State of Nebraska
Jerry Vap, past Chairman of the Nebraska Public Service Commission, past president of the National Association of Conservation Districts
Moderator: Rob Davis, Fresh Energy
Light Lunch: 11:30 am – 12:10 pm
Solar Site Tour: 12:30 – 1:30 pm
SoCore Energy & NPPD
UNK’s Marc Albrecht
Pete Berthelson, native plant expert

Photos by Rob Davis (top) and G. Parker.

LINKS TO MORE INFORMATION
Introducing the Center for Pollinators in Energy, by Rob Davis, Fresh Energy

188-2: Minnesota Sets Standard for Land Use on Solar Sites

Rob Davis’ TedX Minneapolis Talk – Click image to start it.

Kearney solar array nearly complete, residents can now sign up for renewable energy

By Ifesinachi Egbosimba, Nebraska TV

Kearney’s community solar project: 22,000 panels on 53 acres.

The Kearney solar array is the latest addition to the city’s Tech oNE Crossing, and the city manager is hoping the array will attract even more businesses to the area.

The solar array is set to be complete by February. To buy a share in the array, you must be a Nebraska Public Power District customer. Click here to request a solar share.

Read the entire news story here.

LINKS TO MORE INFORMATION

NPPD News Release: Kearney SunWise community solar shares on sale starting Sept. 15, 2017

Project slated to come online in February 2018

Columbus, Neb. – Starting Sept. 15, 2017, residential and commercial customers who live in Kearney will have the opportunity to purchase solar shares in the City’s SunWise Community Solar Program. The facility, which will be constructed in Kearney’s Tech oNE Crossing Technology Park, is expected to come online early next year. NPPD has been working with Kearney officials over the past year to develop their respective program, which will be the third of its kind in the state.

“NPPD’s community solar program enables NPPD to partner with its retail communities interested in pursuing their own solar projects,” said NPPD Retail General Manager Tim Arlt. “Under this program, NPPD works with the community and a selected developer to purchase the output of a solar unit. End-use customers can then participate in the program and pay for shares via their electric bill.”

Read the entire news release.

Photo Credit: Nebraska TV (NTV)

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

What is SunWise?

SunWise is a community solar program available in participating Nebraska Public Power District retail communities. Eligible customers have the opportunity to use solar energy to partially power their homes and businesses without the need to invest in a rooftop or home-based system.

Participating Communities

  • Venango – fully subscribed
  • Scottsbluff – fully subscribed
  • Kearney – shares available starting September 15, 2017

Panelists explain how solar energy benefits Kearney

By Tarrah Gibbons, NTV News


Nebraska Public Power District has been working more than a year with the city to develop its third Sun Wise community solar project in the state. They will be also working to market 7,099 community solar shares. Read more or watch the newscast here.

Photo: Panelists explain how solar energy benefits Kearney at a public presentation hosted by the Nebraska Wildlife Federation. When completed, the 5.8-megawatt farm will be the largest solar project in Nebraska. Credit: NTV News

The panelists included: Dave Richardson, Kearney Clean Energy Group; Graham Christensen, GC Revolt; John Crabtree, Nebraska Sierra Club; Cliff Mesner, Mesner Solar Development.
Moderator: Melissa Freelend, Nebraska Public Power District

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING
UNK will purchase more than half of the electricity from Nebraska’s largest solar farm in Kearney

What is SunWise?

SunWise is a community solar program available in participating Nebraska Public Power District retail communities. Eligible customers have the opportunity to use solar energy to partially power their homes and businesses without the need to invest in a rooftop or home-based system.

Participating Communities

  • Venango – fully subscribed
  • Scottsbluff – fully subscribed
  • Kearney – shares available starting September 15, 2017

NPPD’s SunWise Program

Public invited to tour new Kearney Center at Central Community College on Thursday

CCC’s new Kearney Center a real gem
Kearney Hub Opinion

The 11 a.m. ribbon cutting will be followed by tours through 8 p.m. [New facilities in Kearney] include structures and installations such as the Health Science Education Complex at UNK, the 400,000-square-foot distribution center at Baldwin Filters, and SoCore’s 53-acre solar array that will be Nebraska’s largest when it goes online in January. Read more here.

Central Community College Address1215 30th Avenue, Kearney, Nebraska 68845

ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

Solar Energy Community Forum

City plans to buy $793K parcel of land at tech park

By Amanda Brandt, Kearney Hub

Kearney City logoKEARNEY — The city intends to buy 40 more acres at the technology park in northeast Kearney. At its regular meeting [today], the Kearney City Council will consider authorizing the purchase of land at Tech oNE Crossing, which is southeast of 56th Street and Antelope Avenue . . . Software development company Xpanxion will build its Kearney headquarters at the tech park. Solar power company Infigen Energy has signed an option lease agreement to construct a solar power facility on 53 acres at the park. Read more.