Dane County, Wis., - Smart Energy Decisions

Solar  -  January 6, 2021

Dane County, Wis., to generate 40% of county energy needs with airport solar installation

Dane County Regional Airport in Wisconsin completed a 9 MW solar installation onsite that will generate enough power to cover 40% of the entire county’s energy needs.

The solar array was completed in a partnership between Dane County and Madison Gas and Electric (MGE) and is now providing energy to MGE’s distribution system. This is the largest solar array in Dane County and the largest installation in Wisconsin built for a single customer as it provides power for all county-owned facilities.

“We are excited to reach completion on this historic, large-scale solar project,” Joe Parisi, Dane County Executive, said in a statement. “This solar array brings Dane County one step closer to achieving our commitment to becoming 100% renewable at County-owned facilities. These efforts benefit our environment, the local economy and Dane County taxpayers. We appreciate MGE's partnership on this project and shared commitment to pursuing sustainable energy alternatives.”

The 31,000-panel installation spans 58 acres, which Dane County is leasing to MGE. MGE will then sell the energy directly to the county. It is expected that the clean energy the county receives from the solar array will avoid the emissions equivalent to burning 7,000 tons of coal per year.

MGE is currently pursuing a goal of providing net zero carbon electricity for its customers by 2050, while Dane County has been working on a goal to source 100% renewable energy for the county’s facilities. Besides the 9 Mw from the airport solar farm, the county generates over 600 kW at 16 county-owned facilities, including two previous projects at the Dane County Regional Airport.

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