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MGE proposing 20-MW solar project in Wisconsin

Solar Panels
Credit: Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Madison Gas and Electric (MGE) filed an application with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSCW) for a 20-MW solar array in Fitchburg, Wisconsin. The O’Brien Solar Fields project will provide solar energy to local businesses, municipalities and public institutions under MGE’s Renewable Energy Rider (RER). Six organizations have agreed to receive the clean solar energy from this project under MGE’s RER program

Participating customers that enter into RER agreements are subject to regulatory approval, with MGE. RERs enable MGE to partner with a large energy user to meet customer’s renewable energy needs. RER customers are responsible for costs associated with the renewable generation facility and any distribution costs to deliver energy to the customer.

MGE is partnering with the following customers on this project through the agreement:

City of Fitchburg
Aaron Richardson, Mayor of Fitchburg, said, “This will bring us closer to our renewable energy goals and our entire municipal leadership is thrilled to be a part of this project.”

Placon
“We continuously look to improve and reduce our carbon footprint, programs like this fully promote our company mission and a cleaner community for us to live in,” said Jim Hart, Placon Engineering Manager.

Promega Corporation
“This array will provide over 8% of our current annual electrical consumption, complementing our current investment in solar photovoltaics on the roofs of five Promega buildings in Madison,” explained Kevin Stefanczyk, Facilities Project Manager, Promega Corporation.

University of Wisconsin-Madison
“By repurposing farmland for the solar array and creating a shared, educational space in our community, we would also be celebrating the connection between sustainability and the Wisconsin Idea,” said Laurent Heller, Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Willy Street Co-op
“We were thrilled by the opportunity to grow our sustainability efforts by getting even more of our electrical needs through solar power,” said Anya Firszt, Willy Street Co-op General Manager.

Wisconsin Department of Administration
“Last year, Governor Evers challenged us to have all electricity consumed within our state be 100% carbon-free by 2050,” explained Department of Administration Secretary Joel Brennan.

“20-MW of locally generated, cost-effective carbon-free energy on our electric grid will help us achieve our goal of net-zero carbon electricity by 2050 and the sustainability goals of these customers,” said MGE Chairman, President and CEO Jeff Keebler.

MGE is targeting net-zero carbon electricity by 2050. Under MGE’s Energy 2030 framework for a more sustainable future, the company aims to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 40% by 2030, which is consistent with the U.S. emissions targets as part of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

MGE is growing its engagement of renewables, energy efficiency and electrification of transportation, all of which are strategies identified by the U.S. for achieving decarbonization.