Pine Gate Renewables held a dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, August 28th of their solar farm which was dedicated to the Whitney M. Slater Foundation.
The dedication was in partnership with Duke Energy Progress as part of their Shared Solar Program, which launched in July.
The facility was officially renamed as the Whitney M. Slater Shared Solar Facility.
The Whitney M. Slater Memorial Solar Facility is located at 2615 Nichols Highway, Nichols. The facility is named in memory of Whitney M. Slater, who passed away at the age of 21 from breast cancer. Because she believed her cancer was related to environmental health issues, Ms. Slater began conducting presentations and workshops in South Carolina about environmental health issues. After her death, her mother, Loretta Slater, and grandmother, Delorence Slater, continued her legacy by forming the Whitney M. Slater Foundation. The foundation is pleased that this facility dedicated to Ms. Slater is providing clean and renewable energy to South Carolina residents.
Brittany Staszak, Pine Gate Renewables Landowner Relations and Community Development Manager, opened up the program. She said the facility is located on the multigenerational page family farm.
Chris Dunbar, Pine Gate Renewables Chief Construction Officer, said the farm is 7.12 megawatts. It will supply energy to the subscribers of the Shared Solar Program. It has 22,249 solar panels and took five months to build. It will power about 1,200 homes.
Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe, Duke Energy, recognized the dignitaries present. He said the Shared Solar Program is an affordable option for customers. He said it was a great program for anyone who doesn’t own their own home or can’t locate solar at their residence. The end result should be lower bills.
Loretta Slater spoke about her daughter, who the facility was dedicated to on Tuesday.
Rev. Leo Woodberry also spoke. Rev. Woodberry said that the community solar farm that Duke has constructed is the way to do renewable energy. He said it will help the move away from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy.
A ribbon cutting was held after the comments, and group tours were conducted.
GREENVILLE, S.C. — Duke Energy Progress is launching an affordable option for customers that will enable them to share in the economic benefits from the output of a single solar facility – providing customers another choice that will continue to grow renewable energy in South Carolina.
The Shared Solar Program is available to all qualified Duke Energy Progress residential and nonresidential customers including those who hold tax-exempt status, those who live in multifamily housing or rent homes, and those who may not otherwise have access to solar energy.
Customers who subscribe to solar energy through the Shared Solar Program will receive a monthly bill credit for the value of the energy produced by their subscription.
“This is a great program for any customers who don’t own their residence or are unable to put a solar facility on their property,” said Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe, state president for Duke Energy in South Carolina. “We estimate that residential customers will earn back their initial payment in credits from the solar array in three years. Customers are not only saving on their electric bill, they are directly supporting a renewable energy future in South Carolina for generations to come.”
The program will be powered by the Whitney M. Slater Shared Solar Facility developed by Pine Gate Renewables and located in Dillon County near Lake View, S.C.
Duke Energy Progress serves electric customers in the northeastern part of the state, including Florence, Darlington and Sumter counties.
How does shared
Participants in the program will pay a monthly subscription fee of $6.25 a kilowatt in addition to initial fees to join the program. These program costs are in addition to the customer’s regular energy bill.
The monthly fee funds the customer’s share of supporting the operation of a solar facility located in the Pee Dee region. By subscribing to the Shared Solar Program, the customer will receive a monthly credit from Duke Energy Progress equal to the amount of solar energy the customer’s share produced.
Participating in this program will not impact customer usage or the way they pay their bill.
For qualified low-income customers, Duke Energy Progress will waive the application cost and initial fees, a $120 value. Customers should contact their local community action agency for assistance determining eligibility.
Space is limited and program reservations will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis.
To participate in the program, customers must have an active Duke Energy Progress account. Visit www.duke-energy.com/
SCSharedSolar or contact us at 866.233.2290 for more information.
Growing solar in South Carolina
The Shared Solar Program is a result of the historic collaborative effort in South Carolina to grow solar jobs and give customers choices as to how they live their energy future.
As a result of Act 236 – landmark legislation passed by South Carolina’s General Assembly in 2014 – Duke Energy and its customers have helped make South Carolina one of the country’s greatest success stories for renewable energy. More than 5,000 of the company’s South Carolina customers have installed solar panels on their homes and businesses, and in 2017, South Carolina jumped to No. 8 in the country for the amount of solar installed during the year.
Act 236 provided a framework for customers to install solar on their homes and businesses through strategic programs like the net metering incentive and rebate offerings. In addition to the net metering incentive, the company has provided more than $50 million in rebates as an extra incentive for customers who wanted to go solar across its South Carolina footprint.
Photos by Betsy Finklea/The Dillon Herald
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