NRG Energy Does ‘Community Solar’ in a Big Way

June 18, 2014 By Linda Hardesty

NRG Energy ManageSolar gardens are becoming a popular way for home and business owners to invest in their own solar modules without having to install the devices on their own property. Now, NRG Energy has taken the concept to a whole new level.

NRG Energy opened the NRG Community 1 Solar Generating Facility – a 6 MW installation of more than 25,000 modules on nearly 37 acres of land.

The project was developed by Sol Orchard in collaboration with the Center for Energy Sustainability at San Diego State University’s Imperial Valley Campus.

The Imperial Irrigation District will purchase all energy generated by the facility under a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) and sell it at a competitive rate to interested customers through a community solar program. The inventive system design follows a similar NRG community solar installation in Rutland, Vt., creating a unique option for homes and facilities that may not be ideal candidates for rooftop systems.

The Boeing Company provided engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) for the Community 1 project, marking completion of its first solar power plant for NRG. Boeing and NRG are also currently building the 25.65 MW Dandan Solar Facility, which will be the first solar power plant on the island of Guam, with an expected completion date later this year.

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