Minnesota Power has agreed on a power purchase agreement with the US Solar. The plan is to develop a solar + storage project to be placed in Grand Rapids. The project is an impressive collaboration between Minnesota Power, US Solar, Grand Rapids, the Itasca Clean Energy Team, and Grand Rapids Public Utilities.
US Solar’s chief operating officer, Reed Richerson, described the collaboration as the culmination of a pioneering effort between a privately-owned solar developer, an investor-owned utility, a municipal utility, and a city to provide Grand Rapids with clean, renewable energy.
The project will also benefit the local community with many positive environmental effects, including a boost in renewable and carbon-free energy. To achieve this, US Solar will install a varying mix of deeply-rooted, low lying, and pollinator-friendly plants throughout the area. The habitat will support local wildlife, butterflies, and bees. It will also improve the quality of air, water, and soil in the area.
The project is projected to cost more than $6 million that will come from private investors. This will create more than 25 construction jobs. Once the project begins, it will increase local tax revenue by $465,000 and boost land lease payments, benefitting the residents and Grand Rapids. The Grand Rapids Public Utility ratepayers will also get clean, reliable, and affordable energy through the project 25-year duration.