Press Release: GLREA Report
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
GLREA Releases Report Highlighting Community Solar Solution


October 23, 2013

Media Contacts
Tim Braun, b2,inc.
(970) 618-0080;

Thomas Sweeney, Chief Operating Officer
Clean Energy Collective
Cell: (303) 591-5100 Office: (800) 646-0323
BOULDER, COLO. – (October 23, 2013) Interest in accessible and affordable clean energy is a hot topic in Michigan, and community solar is emerging as a focal point of the conversation. This was underscored today by Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association’s (GLREA) releasing its Guide to Community Solar based on a comprehensive study covering solar options for communities and residences. The guide is drawing attention from power companies and communities alike.

GLREA is a statewide nonprofit organization that educates, advocates, and promotes renewable energy. In the guidebook, GLREA addresses community-owned solar and includes details about an ownership model by Clean Energy Collective, the nation’s leading community-owned solar solution operating in dozens of communities across the country.

The GLREA guidebook highlights Clean Energy Collective (CEC) as a pioneer of community-owned solar, noting that CEC is responsible for more than half of the country’s community solar projects. CEC works in partnership with rural electric cooperatives, municipal utilities, and investor-owned utilities (IOU’s) to provide a solution that is seamless for customers and the utility in that participants receive credits on their electric bills directly from their power provider without having to set up or maintain their own PV system. GLREA describes the benefits of utility partnerships and provides a case study detailing CEC’s community-owned solar model.

Through the CEC program, communities and cities can take advantage of locally-produced renewable energy through a solar ownership model, versus a lease program. This allows participants to receive energy benefits for the lifespan of the professionally managed system, expected to be several decades, significantly raising the value of the system to participants, utilities and the environment. This can deliver a complete payback to the participant in less than 15 years.

The GLREA guidebook describes community-owned solar as follows: “Community participants actually purchase one or more solar panels located in a community solar farm which is a true ownership program, not a lease, resulting in a superior financial payback for the participants.” Furthermore, “maintenance, insurance and other costs associated with the upkeep of the solar panels are all covered. The participants do not have to maintain the panels, or the inverter, or incur any additional cost with this program.”

The GLREA guide concludes that community solar is a way to bring the benefits of solar energy to the widest number of citizens within a community, and that community solar can be an attractive option for utilities to diversify their electric generation mix and provide a popular investment option for their members or customers.

About Clean Energy Collective (CEC) Colorado-based Clean Energy Collective is a developer of community-based renewable energy facilities and a national leader in community power generation. CEC pioneered the model of delivering clean power-generation through utility-scale facilities that are collectively owned by participating utility customers, establishing the first community-owned solar garden in the country near El Jebel, Colorado. Today, CEC has 23 community-owned facilities online or in development, representing more than 10 MW of community-sited clean energy. For more information, please visit: Clean Energy Collective
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Press Release: GLREA Report