Wake Forest, N.C. – Wake Electric continues its support of renewable energy by building a 638-kW solar farm with a 1,115 kWh Tesla battery located near the New Life Church on Zebulon Road east of Wake Forest.
This project demonstrates Wake Electric’s commitment to balance renewable energy with controlling costs for its members. While the solar panels will soak up the sun’s rays, the batteries will allow Wake Electric to use that power during times when purchasing other types of power would be more expensive.
“Wake Electric believes that pairing solar power with batteries will allow the cooperative to store power during off-peak times and use that electricity when energy use is at its highest, resulting in reliable and affordable power supply for years to come,” said Don Bowman, vice president of engineering and operations.
The solar panels are enough to power approximately 100 average sized homes during daylight hours while the batteries are the equivalent of about 15 Tesla electric vehicles. The batteries will be charged when demand for electricity is low and discharged during moments of peak demand for power. This not only enhances electric reliability but is expected to provide cost savings over the lifetime of the batteries. Co-op members will benefit from those savings because cooperatives are not-for-profit, at-cost energy providers.
In addition to solar power and batteries, Wake Electric and the network of cooperatives in North Carolina have worked together for years to lead innovative energy strategies, including community solar, microgrids, demand response programs and solar plus storage initiatives.
“We will continue to lead the integration, management and optimization of resources and technologies that benefit our community and local consumer-members, now and in the decades to come,” said Jim Mangum, general manager and CEO.
Wake Electric is a local, member-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperative serving Durham, Franklin, Granville, Johnston, Nash, Vance, and Wake counties. Visit www.wemc.com for more information.