A staff reporter at The Boulder iJournal gives details about a new power purchase agreement between community-owned solar developer Clean Energy Collective and the Yampa Valley Electric Association. The Association intends to purchase up to a 500 kilowatts of renewable energy from the Cooperative, a community owned solar company based in northern Colorado:
Yampa Valley Electric Association , a customer-owned rural electric cooperative serving more than 26,000 members in northwestern Colorado [is set] to buy 500 kilowatts of renewable energy from Clean Energy Collective’’s newest array to be built in Craig, Colo. Individual Yampa Valley Electric Association customers can then purchase solar panels in the shared array and receive credit for the energy produced directly on their monthly utility bill. The credit rate being offered by Yampa Valley Electric Association on participating member bills is significantly higher than the retail electric rate that members pay, making the program very advantageous for it members to embrace solar, according to its promoters.Clean Energy Collective expects the 500 kilowatt, approximately 2,100-panel array to serve upwards of 200 residential and commercial customers. Yampa Valley Electric Association ratepayers can buy in with as few as one panel, at an anticipated cost of $646.25 per panel, or purchase as many as needed to fully offset the electricity needs of their home or business. In 2010, Clean Energy Collective established the first community-owned solar array in the country near El Jebel, Colo. Today, Clean Energy Collective operates nine community solar facilities in Colorado, New Mexico, and Minnesota, generating 3.8 megawatts of clean power, spanning more than half of all utility customers in Colorado. Clean Energy Collective also has an additional 15 facilities under construction or approved for development, representing more than 6 megawatts of distributed renewable energy.