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Renewable energy generation meeting set for Jan. 24

By Indiana Reed
Special to The SUN

With the growing interest in local, renewable energy production, La Plata Electric Association (LPEA) is reprising its series of renewable energy generation meetings on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013, 8-9 a.m.

The upcoming meeting, to be held in the multi-purpose room at LPEA’s Bodo Park headquarters (45 Stewart Street), Durango, is free and open to all who have invested in, or are considering investment in, renewable generation, as well as professional solar installers.

“The LPEA board of directors has revised its policy covering Renewable Energy Credits, or RECs, and approved a new rate structure, both of which affect local renewable generation,” said Mark Schwantes, manager of corporate services. “We have a new REC payment option for the environmental attributes on approved net metered installations greater than 10 kW.”

LPEA staff takes direction and builds programs based on policies developed and passed by the board of directors. The Renewable Generation and Environmental Attributes is Board Policy No. 359 and available for review at www.lpea.coop.

Most notably, LPEA will provide customers a one-time, up-front payment for RECs on installations of 10 kW or smaller, and for RECs associated with installations greater than 10 kW, six-month payments for 10 years, based on actual metered generation.

The LPEA board has also identified development of a long-term, comprehensive alternative energy plan as a 2013 strategic goal, and Schwantes will discuss the preliminary aspects of that plan at the Jan. 24 meeting.

“For example, we are actively pursuing development of a community solar garden,” said Schwantes. “This would be an opportunity for community members who are unable to install solar panels on their homes to participate in local renewable generation. A number of options for structuring the program exist and we would like to hear ideas and suggestions from our members.”

Reservations for the Renewable Energy Generation meeting are not required, but appreciated, as refreshments will be served. For further information on the event, or to R.S.V.P., contact Sue Maxwell at 382-7170 or smaxwell@lpea.coop. To learn about future events, visit www.lpea.coop, or request e-mail alerts via Constant Contact (sign up at www.lpea.coop).

This story was posted on January 17, 2013.