MGE Breaks Ground on Major Solar Project in Middleton
Second array in Middleton advances clean energy goals for city, school district and MGE.
Madison, Wis., Oct. 29 2019 – Madison Gas and Electric (MGE) representatives were joined by leaders from the City of Middleton and the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District today to celebrate the groundbreaking for a 5-megawatt (MW) solar array at the Middleton Municipal Airport, also known as Morey Field.
- Groundbreaking for 5-megawatt (MW) solar array at Morey Field in Middleton.
- A 3.5-MW share of the array will serve MGE's popular Shared Solar program.
- A 1-MW share of the array will serve the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District under a Renewable Energy Rider agreement.
- A 0.5-MW share of the array will serve the City of Middleton under a separate Renewable Energy Rider agreement.
- MGE's Renewable Energy Rider is designed for large energy users.
The Morey Field Solar project will be the second array in MGE's popular Shared Solar program. The expansion of the program gives residential and business customers throughout MGE's electric service territory the option of powering their home or business with locally generated solar energy.
"Our first Shared Solar project in Middleton set the foundation for this expansion and for MGE's ongoing collaboration with the City and the school district," said MGE Chairman, President and CEO Jeff Keebler. "What started a few years ago has helped to grow locally generated clean energy in Dane County and serves as a great example of what can be accomplished when we work together around shared goals. Working together with our customers will help MGE reach our goal of net-zero carbon electricity by 2050."
MGE's first Shared Solar project is a 500-kilowatt array on the roof of Middleton's Municipal Operations Center. It began serving customers in January 2017.
Customers may visit mge.com/sharedsolar to enroll in Shared Solar. Participation is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The Morey Field Solar project is expected to be operational in 2020.
Solar array powers city, school district facilities
Seventy percent of the solar array at Morey Field will serve Shared Solar participants. A 1-MW share of the array will serve the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District under a Renewable Energy Rider (RER) agreement. A 0.5-MW share will serve the City of Middleton under a separate RER agreement.
"The City of Middleton is pleased to be partnering on our second solar project with MGE," said Middleton Mayor Gurdip Brar. "MGE has great leadership and is committed to reducing the use of fossil fuels. As of now, at 5 MWs, this will be the largest solar project in Wisconsin. Climate is changing. CO2
levels are going up consistently, and glaciers are melting. Whatever we could do to reduce the carbon footprint would be positive for our planet. Let us do it."
"The Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District has a long and proud tradition of supporting sustainable, energy-efficient and environmentally friendly initiatives," added Dr. Dana Monogue, Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District Superintendent. "This partnership with MGE and the City of Middleton is another example. We are also excited about the potential in millions in energy savings over the next 30 years."
Under an RER, MGE partners with a large energy user to tailor a renewable energy solution to meet that customer's energy needs. RER customers are responsible for costs associated with the renewable generation facility and distribution costs to deliver the energy to the customer. The model advances shared sustainability goals and grows clean energy in our community.
MGE generates and distributes electricity to 153,000 customers in Dane County, Wis., and purchases and distributes natural gas to 161,000 customers in seven south-central and western Wisconsin counties. MGE's parent company is MGE Energy, Inc. The company's roots in the Madison area date back more than 150 years.