Blue Ridge Energy builds 5th solar panel garden for members

Bringing solar energy to more customers

LENOIR, N.C. (WBTV) - Blue Ridge Energy says interest in solar power is growing so fast it has built another solar farm to allow its members to be a part of it.

It is the fifth solar farm the electric co-op has built since 2016. This one has 432 solar panels that members can subscribe to, or lease, as one official called it. For $3.75 a month per panel, members will have the same privileges as someone with a rooftop system on their home, said Jason Lingle of Blue Ridge Energy.

The exception, he says, is “they don’t own them, don’t have to maintain them and are not locked into a long-term contract.”

The power from the panels will go into the overall grid but will be credited to the member’s bill. That will lower costs for many, said officials.

“They could save a couple of dollars a month or 5, 10, or 20 dollars a month depending on their usage."

Officials say it gives people who otherwise could not get involved in solar panel energy a chance to do so. Even renters can subscribe to a solar panel at the garden.

With this new garden about to go on the grid, Blue Ridge Energy has about 2000 panels across the foothills and mountains. The company expects to build more.

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