Shelby ‘Turns On’ New 14-Acre Solar Power Field

Jan 20, 2020 | News, Newsletter

By Katie Ellington, Staff Reporter
richlandsource.com

 

SHELBY — At this very moment, Shelby residents could be lighting their living rooms, charging their phones and heating their homes with solar power.

Shelby’s solar array is officially up and running, representatives of AEP said Monday.

John Ensman, Shelby’s director of utilities, said the 14-acre solar field was first energized on Dec. 28 for tests (which went “flawlessly”) and that the system will be placed online Monday.

Construction of the solar field, located on State Street, began in late September.

Its 6,939 solar panels are programmed to rotate throughout the day so they are always facing the sun.

“The array is expected to reduce the amount of purchased power by approximately four percent of the city’s annual energy use,” said Ensman.

Ensman confirmed the entire solar field will produce 3,500 megawatt hours per year. The cost savings are estimated to be $205,000 in the first year and $3 million over the next 10 years.

“This renewable energy is not only economically beneficial, but it is environmentally beneficial as well,” said Mayor Steve Schag.

“We are truly blessed to be a leader in the area of renewable energy partnerships in north central ohio. In doing some research, very few municipalities of our size have a solar field of that size within their city limits,” Schag said.

The amount of energy generated by the panels will vary based on available sunlight, but some power is generated even on cloudy days.

“They’re not producing at their peak capability, but they are producing,” said Joel Jansen, COO of AEP OnSite Partners, during Monday’s overcast afternoon.

“You may think here in Ohio that we have too many clouds, but there’s a predictable amount of sun that comes and it comes during the day when people are using their air conditioning, their heat, most of their electricity,” Jansen added.

“So the energy hedge that (Shelby residents) get from the solar project matches very well with a lot of their needs,” Jansen said.

While the array is now operational, tests will continue over the next two months to ensure the system is working as efficiently as possible.

Since the panels sit about four feet above ground, a low-growing pollinator garden will be planted to keep weeds from sprouting up and create a scenic habitat for bees.

Roseville Officials Invest $7M to Revive Village, Offer New Business Opportunities

ROSEVILLE – Nearly a decade of grant-funded projects are transforming the village of Roseville.

Few will have the impact of a the new supermarket building. “It will be the centerpiece of a new downtown,” said Heidi Milner, the village’s fiscal officer.

It is nearing completion on part of the former Ungemach Pottery site on Potters Lane. Construction was funded by $750,000 in grants, the bulk of which was a USDA Rural Development Grant, and local investment. The new building features a grocery store, restaurant space and a walk-up window that could be used for ice cream orders. Garage doors on each side of the dining area will give it a pleasant summer atmosphere, as will a patio behind the building that opens facing the levy.

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Clinton County Port Authority Launches New Website

WILMINGTON, OH — The Clinton County Port Authority (CCPA) recently launched a new website, created by Golden Shovel Agency, to further strengthen its online presence and the economic growth of the community. The new site includes county-wide data, information specifically collected for site selectors, and local business resources to serve as a one-stop-shop for companies considering new investment or expansion in Clinton County.

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