The Smart Electric Power Alliance’s (SEPA’s) 2016 Solar Power Player Awards recognizes utilities, companies and individuals who are innovating and collaborating to expand the use of distributed energy like rooftop solar. This year awardees include Pepco, the Village of Minster, Green Power EMC, Clean Energy Collective and Dora Nakafuji, all of which have championed solar and other renewable energy sources.
“Our 2016 Solar Power Players all have fresh, exciting stories to tell about the potential for innovative projects and programs when utilities and their solar industry partners work together on the solutions needed to bring more solar and other distributed technologies to the grid,” said Julia Hamm, SEPA President and CEO. “Our winners provide ample evidence of the changes in institutional culture and operational style taking root across our industry, driving a transformation of our energy system that benefits all stakeholders—consumers, utilities and the solar industry.”
In Minster, Ohio, for instance, the public utility created a privately financed solar-plus-storage project providing the town and its partners with four revenue streams. Meanwhile Pepco, which serves the DC metro region, was awarded as the Investor-Owned Utility of the Year. The company developed automated tools streamlining the interconnection process and allowing it to increase the amount of solar that can be connected to its grid network.
In Georgia Green Power EMC worked with 38 electric cooperatives to implement a solar strategy that’s upped their appetite for solar power. Prior to implementing the strategy these co-ops had 7.5 megawatts of solar power under development now they have 240 MWs under development.
With the most ambitious renewable energy targets in the country Hawaii, which has a goal to switch to 100-percent renewable energy by 2045, probably has the most work to do. Thankfully it has SEPA’s Solar Champion Dora Nakafuji who, at Hawaiian Electric Co., has led development of data-driven tools for grid reliability as it integrates more solar power.
The last awardee is perhaps focussed on the newest and fastest-growing segment of solar power, community solar. Clean Energy Collective was recognized as Innovative Partner of the Year for introducing a turnkey community solar development platform and toolkit for utilities to help them implement their community solar programs. The platform will help it grow the community solar pipeline across the US.
The winners of awards, the eighth annual, will be honored Sept. 13 as part of Solar Power International in Las Vegas.Tweet