Co-op Solar Farm Begins Production
SINCE LATE 2016, representatives of your co-op have shared information with you regarding our community solar initiative. Blue Ridge and South Carolina’s 19 other cooperatives are in the process of creating the largest network of community solar installations in the state. With construction having been completed in July, members can view Phase 1 of the Blue Ridge Community Solar Farm on a site adjacent to Chastain Road Elementary School and the Pickens County Career and Technology Center. The farm is visible from U.S. Highway 123.
“Community solar is a good fit for both electric cooperatives and our members,” says President and CEO Charles Dalton. “There are co-op members who desire the benefits of solar power, but don’t want the inconvenience of constructing and maintaining solar panels on their homes. We’ve done the work, so that our members can have access to a renewable resource, if they choose to do so.”
“We’re excited about finishing this first phase. There are 31 members who’ve purchased blocks of power in the solar farm. With testing almost complete, Blue Ridge will start applying credits to these members beginning in late August or early September.” Zach Hinton, vice president of economic development and government relations.
Construction of the Phase 2 (Oconee County) version of the community solar farm project will get underway in September. Completion of this project, combined with Phase 1, will offer our co-op members a total of 250,000 watts of renewable energy. Thirty-four Blue Ridge members have signed up to buy blocks of solar power to be produced by the Oconee community installation; however, a few blocks remain unsold. If you have an interest in renewable energy and would like to learn more, please contact Tim Mays at (864) 647-6647.