Centre County Commissioners break ground on Solar Panel project

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Last year, Centre County Commissioners approved over 3,200 solar panels to go on more than 6 acres at the Centre County Correctional Facility.
Soon you’ll be able to see those panels up and functioning to serve the community.

Local resident, Nancy Chiswick says the panels are a big asset to the county for several reasons.

“As a taxpayer and as a Grandmother I want to see us not only save money, which this is going to do, but I want to know that there’s a future both here and in the planet for my Grandchildren,” Chiswick, said.

Tuesday Centre County Commissioners and other dignitaries held a groundbreaking ceremony at the solar panel area.

Centre County Commissioner Chair, Michael Pipe, says the solar energy is projected to save the county millions in electricity by the end of the 25 year deal.

“When we get out to years 25, 30 for this project we could be seeing a tremendous amount of savings, because the project’s been paid off and we’re now basically being able to generate our own electricity,” Pipe, said.

Pipe says the county is paying Solar Renewable LLC around $1.6 million for the solar panels for 5 years.

At the end of the fifth year, commissioners can decide to purchase them or continue to rent.

The solar company says all these panels will be bifacial solar panels, which utilize solar energy from snow or even grass.

“They actually generate from one side, there will actually be a reflection so that way you’re getting not just the generation off the front side, but you’re also getting it off the back side,” Douglas Berry, CEO and Owner from Solar Renewable Energy LLC, said.

“Fortuitous for us, that they happened to develop this technology, the bifacial, just at the right time, for our project here,” Chiswick, said.

The county will also earn money in the form of credits from Solar Renewable LLC. For the solar energy they produce.
Construction began in mid December and is expected to go on till’ March.

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