By Greentech Lead Team: UniSource
Energy Services, a provider of electric service to customers in Mohave and
Santa Cruz Counties, has launched a new program that allows electric customers
to buy solar energy directly from two recently completed solar generating
systems in Mohave County.
UES will sell Mohave County solar
systems’ combined 1.7 megawatt (MW) output directly to customers through UES’
new Bright Arizona Community Solar program.
“Electric customers who want to power
their home or business with solar energy can now stake their claim to the
output of these solar power systems. the Bright Arizona Community Solar program
offers an easy, affordable way to go green by essentially sharing solar arrays
with other electric customers,” said Paul Bonavia, chairman and CEO of UES and
its parent company, UniSource Energy Corporation.
Energy will be available to UES
electric customers in 150 kilowatt-hour (kWh) blocks that will add $3 apiece to
monthly bills. Customers can purchase some or all of their energy through the
program, reducing or eliminating their use of conventional power for an
For 2012, UES has 1,720 blocks of
solar energy available for purchase from La Senita Elementary School facility
and solar system southwest of Kingman.
La Senita Elementary School facility
employs 1.22 MW single-axis tracking photovoltaic array features more than
5,000 solar panels built by Tucson-based SOLON. Kingman system is developed as
part of Western Wind Energy’s integrated wind and solar system.
Additional blocks could become
available as UES expands its local solar generating resources. The company will
invest approximately $5 million this year in renewable energy systems and is
currently looking to expand its development in Mohave and Santa Cruz counties.
Each block replaces an equivalent
amount of conventional power at a rate that will remain fixed for 20 years
under rules approved by the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC). That means
participants can lock in a steady supply of green power at a price that could
generate significant savings if the cost of fossil-fueled power increases.
In early 2011, UniSource Energy
Services announced personalized home energy assessments for a discounted $99
price to help local residents use less energy and reduce their energy bills.