New Website Highlights Solar Advancements Made by Rural Co-ops
March 31, 2017
By Karen Uhlenhuth
Electric cooperatives that have taken the plunge into solar energy are the stars of a new website aimed at persuading more co-ops to add solar energy to their mix.
RuralSolarStories.org, produced by the Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC), features the tales of three rural electric cooperatives across the Midwest that have responded to customer interest by investing in solar generation. More stories are on the way.
The website’s mission “is to help raise the voices of solar champions within the co-op community,” said Andy Olsen, a senior policy advocate for the ELPC. “The co-op community is unique. There’s such a culture of cooperation and learning among peers, we wanted to make sure solar leaders had a venue to be heard.”
Olsen believes there are several compelling reasons to shine the spotlight on rural co-ops that are in the solar-energy vanguard.
“Co-ops have an outsized influence on energy policy,” he said. “We’ve experienced that at the state and federal levels. We talk to members of Congress about energy policy and they want to go back and talk to the co-ops.