Resolution to Encourage Community Solar Development in Ann Arbor
At its July 9, 2013 meeting the Energy Commission adopted a resolution (attached) to develop a pilot Community Solar project. Community Solar is an emerging practice allowing a group of people or businesses to purchase shares in a renewable energy system not located at the site of their electric meter. The participants receive a share of the value of the energy produced from the off-site renewable energy system as if the system were located at their home or business. Certain preclusions do not automatically allow this to happen within the territory of large public utilities. The Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association (GLREA) is underway with a state-wide grant exploring feasibility and constraints facing Community Solar, and a pilot in Ann Arbor can inform, and be informed, by this effort.
The Cherryland Electric Cooperative in Traverse City is the first larger scale example in Michigan of Community Solar and has seen fast growth in resident participation in the short time the program has been available. With many residents living in shaded areas, not having adequate orientation for solar exposure, not owning their property, or facing upfront costs preventing them from supporting a full solar electric system themselves, they are prevented from the benefits generated by solar photovoltaics and from receiving available credits/payment from the utility company.
Given Ann Arbor’s designation as a US Department of Energy “Solar America City,” this to-be-defined pilot would advance sustainability aims of the City and help lower emissions associated with conventional power generation.
Prepared by: Nathan Geisler, Systems Planning
Reviewed by: Craig Hupy, Public Services Area Administrator
Sponsored by: Energy Commission
Whereas, The City of Ann Arbor has adopted a Climate Action Plan and developed a Solar Plan that both advocate maximizing the installation and u...Click here for full text