A wastewater operator from the city of Becker was brainstorming new ways to lower the city’s energy cost and took notice of a commercial solar array in the area that Cedar Creek Energy had completed. He reached out to our team for a consultation.
Cedar Creek Energy’s custom, consultative approach was to first analyze the city’s utility bills across multiple locations, including the wastewater treatment center. Following consumption analysis, Cedar Creek Energy presented several solar solutions. The City of Becker decided to move forward with the project reflecting the largest electrical loads:
- 712kW DC, 500 AC
- 1900 Solar REC panels
- 4 Chint Power System Inverters
- Single Axis Tracking – Array Technology, Inc (ATI for short) follows the sun rotating east to west. Helps increase production of the PV array by providing better angle to the sun throughout the day
The Final Result
The City of Becker was able to obtain this solar array with NO upfront costs through a power purchase agreement. After six years the city will have the opportunity to purchase the array in full. They have locked in their utility rate with a 1% escalator. As the current utility rates (and general inflation across the board) continue to rapidly rise, their solar array was a great investment. The city will save thousands of dollars and the initial cash flow projected at their contract sign date will almost certainly be exceeded.
As an Xcel Energy customer, the city will receive the PV Demand Credit on their utility bill, which will credit them approximately 7 cents per kWh produced during peak business hours.
The wastewater facility system went live in November, 2021 and will produce over 1,000,000 kWh per year, saving the city approximately $100,000 in utility costs annually. The energy produced by the solar array will also reduce their carbon emissions by over 1,600,000 pounds each year!