Our Town York: Solar Project

Pure Nebraska
Published: Dec. 8, 2022 at 2:22 PM CST
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YORK, Neb. (KOLN) - Power generated from the York County Solar Project provides a renewable energy source for city, county and public school facilities in York.

We caught up with Craig Vincent with Nebraska Public Power District to talk about what’s considered to be a 3.2 Megawatt community solar project. The project was made possible by NPPD, the City of York, and the Lincoln solar developer called GRNE Solar.

“This is a program that NPPD developed a number of years ago, to offer a cost-effective way to add utility-scale renewable energy to communities NPPD serves at retail,” Vincent said. “York is the most recent community to have an energy-generating facility like this to go into operation.”

“The mayor and city council here in York have determined the best way to serve all of the rate payers in York, is for tax-supported entities in the city to receive the energy generated from this solar project,” Vincent said. “The city, York Public Schools, and York County offices in York are all receiving the equivalent output of this energy, in an amount that offsets 100% of their power usage.”

Other communities can do a project like this. “If the community is served at retail by NPPD, they could do it,” Vincent said. “York is now the 7th community where we have implemented this program. The facilities we have in other parts of the state range from very small to very large.”

The solar facility is definitely on the cutting edge. The solar panels offer a tracking system, where the panels follow the sun. “This facility has bi-facial panels, where it can collect energy on both sides,” Vincent said. There is also an effort underway to make sure this is an educational environment. “There is an opportunity here for students to take part,” Vincent said. “The existence of this facility creates a hands-on lab for students to learn more about renewable energy.”