Lane Electric “flipped the switch” on Oregon’s first electric cooperative Community Solar Project on December 28, 2015. “The 25kW, 84-panel solar system was in the works for almost a year” says Dave D’Avanzo, Manager of Member Services for Lane Electric. Lane Electric is the first co-op to offer community solar to its members.
Renewable energy, specifically solar, is not new to the co-op. They have offered rebates to their members for home and business-based solar installations since the mid-90s and in 2012, Lane Electric partnered with King Estate Winery and SolarCity to install a 1 megawatt solar system consisting of over 4,100 panels on a parcel of land donated by the winery.
The co-op based community solar project is projected to generate approximately 38,000 kilowatt-hours annually which is equivalent to the energy use of two average households in Lane Electric’s service area. Subscription costs for the output from a half-panel is $600 and $1200 for the output from a full-panel. Lane Electric members have the option of financing the cost over 12-months on their electric bills. Subscribing members can realize a credit on their electric bill of between $3 and $5 per month depending on the sun’s rays.