Clean Energy Collective (CEC) and First Solar have entered into a Module Supply Agreement (MSA). The partnership will allow the two companies to develop and market community solar to residential and business customers directly on behalf of their partner utilities.
“The community solar market promises significant growth, and CEC is clearly well-positioned to lead in this space,” said Eran Mahrer, Senior Director of Business Development – Utilities for First Solar. “First Solar’s module supply agreement is a tangible demonstration of our ongoing commitment to this strategic partnership.”
The first four projects to be developed under the MSA showcase the diversity of customers who can benefit from the program. They demonstrate how CEC and First Solar can meet the needs of different types of utilities as well, from investor-owned to public power and rural electric cooperatives.
The project in Pueblo, Colorado will serve customers of Black Hills Energy. Individuals will be able to own portions of a fixed tilt array. First Solar will provide the modules and equipment while CEC will develop and administer the program. Owners of solar panels will receive direct credit on their electric bill for the power produced.
Low-income residents in Black Hills Energy service territory will receive a portion of the power as well. This project is the first community solar park in Pueblo and it surrounding area.
San Antonio, Texas
Using a similar model to the Pueblo project, the San Antonio, Texas facility will be developed and administered by CEC while First Solar will provide the modules and tacking system.
Residential and business customers of CPS Energy will be eligible to purchase energy through a CEC managed program. The program is designed to make solar power more affordable and accessible to residential and commercial customers alike.
Corpus Christi, Texas
In another first, the project in Corpus Christi, Texas, will bring the first large-scale solar garden to a deregulated market. Customers of the non-profit NEC Retail (Nueces Electric Cooperative) will be able to purchase solar modules to offset their electricity bills.
As a non-profit rural electric cooperative, NEC Retail is able to serve customers anywhere in Texas who have the ability to choose their electric provider.
CEC has worked on three previous community solar projects with Holy Cross Energy. At the site in Rifle, Colorado; First Solar modules with anti-reflective coating will be used, along with a balance of components from other suppliers.
Combined, these projects can bring community solar to nearly 1 million potential customers who can not install solar on their own property.
“Roofless solar allows the greatest number of consumers to participate in and enjoy the benefits of locally produced clean power,” said CEC founder and CEO Paul Spencer. “We are proud to partner with First Solar in using their industry-leading technology, which allows us to provide the most competitive pricing and greatest value to utilities and their customers.”