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News Release - Solar Farm one year anniversary

Posted by Morgan White on December 16, 2016

In its first year of commercial operation from December 11, 2015, to December 10, 2016, the Solar Farm generated 7,284 megawatt-hours (MWh) of clean, renewable energy for the Urbana campus, successfully meeting expectations.

solar farmUnder a 10-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Phoenix Solar South Farms, LLC, the university acquires all of the power generated by the Solar Farm and all associated renewable energy credits and carbon credits. Notable first-year production achievements of the Solar Farm include:

  • Provided 1.95% of projected FY17 annual electricity consumption1
  • Supplied almost 14% of the campus electrical demand at noon on April 3, 2016
  • Delivered 900 MWh of power to the campus grid in June 2016, the highest month of production
  • Frequently generated over 4 MW of power; system capacity is 4.68 MWac
  • Reduced the campus carbon footprint by more than 6,000 metric tons of CO2e

The Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP), the Urbana campus’ strategic sustainability plan, set a goal of obtaining at least 120,000 MWh of power per year from low-carbon sources by FY20. With the Solar Farm’s electrical production and the university’s wind PPA with Rail Splitter Wind Farm LLC, the campus is 25% of the way toward meeting this goal.

Hourly information on the Solar Farm’s energy production and impact to campus since first-connected in November 2015 is available at: