The Cooperative Way: Solar at Ouachita Electric Cooperative
In the beginning of 2016, Arkansas was ranked 41st in the country for solar installed. Today's Power (TPI) installed 1,466 kW of solar power in Arkansas alone in 2016. Fast forward a year later, the natural state is now ranked 38th! Ouachita Electric Cooperative (OECC) partnered with Today's Power for their second TPI Solar Array in 2017. In 2016, TPI designed and constructed a solar garden on OECC's campus, and we currently broke ground on their 1 MW Commnity Solar Array.
COMMUNITY SOLAR AT OECC
‘Community solar’ can referred to as a shared renewable energy plant or a solar power plant whose electricity is shared by more than one household through subscription. Today's Power has designed a 1 MW Community Solar Array for Ouachita Electric Cooperative to offer their members a renewable alternative to their already reliable and affordable mix. The Holly Springs-based facility, which is scheduled to be completed in the second quarter of 2017, will involve an array of about 4,080 panels that encompass about 5.5 acres of a 10 acre site. The output of the energy produced by the array could provide for the power needs of up to 250 homes.
SOLAR GARDEN AT OECC
The community solar project is the second project that TPI & OECC have worked on together. A 93 KW solar array was designed and built in 2016 to power the cooperative’s headquarters, operations center, and campus. Since going online in March of 2016 95% of the electric power needed for the site in Camden has been provided by the solar array.
“All of our solar systems are customized around a cooperative’s wholesale billing drivers and load characteristics specifically to produce maximum value for the cooperative,” said Michael Henderson, President of Today’s Power, Inc.
According to Ouachita Electric Cooperative CEO, Mark Cayce, “the cooperative chose the TPI product because of its safety attributes, the unique architecture of the solar panels, and the reliability that has been demonstrated over the last year to meet our energy needs. Partnering with local industries to bring the first utility scale solar to Arkansas, demonstrating on our own office the feasibility and affordability of using solar power in South Arkansas, making community solar available to our members is just part of providing more value to being a cooperative member”.
For more information on customized utility-scale arrays, contact Matt Irving at firstname.lastname@example.org or 501-920-1370.