The Chadron City Council is exploring an opportunity to bring a solar farm to our community. If this utility is feasible, the city could join Scottsbluff, Venango, and Kearney in generating some of its electricity from a renewable source. The Chadron Chapter of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) applauds this investigation. If a solar farm is plausible it would allow city residents to buy carbon-free energy in an affordable way.
The city and Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) would be partners in this proposed venture. The solar array itself would be built by a third party, but NPPD would manage the energy production and the customer billing. Costs to consumers are projected to be a little higher at first, but those prices would be fixed for about twenty years and participation in the program would be optional.
The proposal was discussed in front of a full house at the October 16 Council meeting. Representatives of NPPD were on hand to explain the process and answer questions. They suggested that, based on customer inquiries, Chadron residents are very interested in solar power.
Public response at the meeting was universally positive. Two CCL members attested to community interest – over 150 Chadron households are considering participating – and the durability of modern solar panels. Individually-owned solar arrays around town have fared very well in all weather conditions – including hail – over the last four years. A third member of CCL asked NPPD to provide additional information so the entire process can be explained in lay-person terms.
Anyone interested in exploring carbon-free energy production is welcome to find out what CCL is all about. We are a nonpartisan group seeking a sustainable future. We will meet at the First Congregational Church on the corner of 4th and Chadron at 6:30 pm on November 14 and on December 12. Please join us. You can also find us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=chadron%20ccl.
Kurt E. Kinbacher for the Chadron Chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby