Fort Collins-based electric cooperative Poudre Valley REA recently announced two new solar arrays with a combined capacity of 2 megawatts are online and generating clean, renewable electricity for its service territory.
These arrays expand two of the three existing utility-scale solar projects completed by the partnership between PVREA and Silicon Ranch. The Kersey Solar Farm, located adjacent to Platte Valley High School in Kersey, and the Skylark Solar Farm near Severance together have the capacity to generate enough electricity to power over 2,100 PVREA households annually.
Silicon Ranch, one of the nation’s largest independent solar power producers, funded the construction and owns and operates the new facilities for the long term, as it does with every project it develops. The construction of these facilities supported approximately 60 jobs, many of which were filled by local labor and local subcontractors and brought roughly $2,000,000 of labor related income to the community.
In recent years, PVREA has made significant carbon-free advancements by incorporating local renewable energy into the electric grid. PVREA’s current power mix includes two hydroelectric generators, four large solar arrays, and three community-owned solar farms. With these two new arrays now operational, the co-op has brought online 11 local renewable energy projects totaling 20.5 MW of renewable energy that powers 3,650 homes and businesses in the service territory. Altogether, PVREA members receive 30% of their energy from renewable resources, which is planned to increase to 50% by 2024.