EnerStar unveils Co-op Solar program

EnerStar Electric Cooperative directors, and mascot “Ray,” were on hand for the ribbon cutting by CEO Mike Clark. Shown left to right are: Danny Gard, Jr., Jeff Zimmerman, Robert Staley II, Kevin Julian, Clark, and Tom Jones.

EnerStar Electric Cooperative unveiled its new solar program thanks to a collaboration with Wabash Valley Power Association (WVPA), the co-op’s wholesale power supplier. The new Co-op Solar program is part of a larger-scale local solar program from WVPA. It consists of five solar arrays located in Illinois, Missouri and Indiana and will generate up to 1.7 MW of renewable energy.

EnerStar CEO Mike Clark said, “Our new program allows members the opportunity to purchase solar energy from a cooperative-­maintained facility, eliminating individual ­concerns such as shaded roofs, maintenance and landlord restrictions.” He added that those who rent their homes will also have an opportunity to participate.

“Spreading the arrays out over a three-state geography gives members the best opportunity for capturing the most sun due to weather diversity, and allows the arrays to produce the most electricity collectively,” stated Andrew Horstman, project manager for WVPA. “It may be raining on the arrays in Indiana, but the sun may be shining in Illinois or Missouri.”

The Illinois array is adjacent to the EnerStar Electric headquarters in Paris.