by Brandon Sack
Evergy is committed to providing our customers with cost-effective, reliable renewable energy solutions to help build a more sustainable future. Evergy is committed to being 100% carbon neutral by 2045.
The Evergy Energy Partners division has decades of experience developing diverse energy solutions with substantial long-term power cost benefits for utility, municipal, cooperative, and industrial customers. The benefits are accomplished by combining an in-depth understanding of long- and short-term utility planning, operations management, experience with regulators along with unparalleled experience negotiating multiple types of energy procurement and sale agreement structures. In 2021, we completed an exciting project to bring solar energy to Paragould, Arkansas to support their commitment of bringing green energy to the community.
About Paragould, Arkansas
Paragould is located in Greene County in Northeastern Arkansas on the eastern edge of Crowley’s Ridge. With more than 26,000 residents, the city of Paragould is committed to offering clean, affordable energy solutions to serve the needs of its residents and encourage industry in the area.
Evergy has provided energy management services to Paragould Light Water and Cable (PLWC) for more than a decade and we are excited to support PLWC in bringing clean energy solutions to the customers of Paragould.
“PLWC is proud to partner with our long-term friends from Evergy in building this solar project. This project will continue to promote PLWC’s commitment to clean energy for the future of Paragould. The electricity from the project will be the lowest cost on-peak resource in PLWC’s energy portfolio and will promote our continued efforts in providing low-cost energy for our consumers.” -Darrell Phillips, CEO of PLWC
Our Goal: Providing “Greene” energy for Greene County
Evergy Energy Partners was selected through a request for proposal (RFP) to offer innovative, solar energy solutions to the Paragould community. PLWC’s primary goal was to meet the growing demand from consumers by investing in renewable energy. However, they needed to do so in a way that kept power costs low in the community in order to keep their customers happy and recruit industry to the local area. At Evergy Energy Partners, our goal was to ensure that the energy generated from the new solar array was the lowest cost peak power resource in PLWC’s energy portfolio.
About Paragould Solar Array
Evergy and PLWC broke ground on the 10-acre solar array in 2021. The utility-scale bifacial solar array was later completed in the Fall of 2021, generating just under 2.0 megawatts of energy for the city of Paragould.
- Completed in the Fall of 2021
- 10-acre solar array
- 4,692 solar panels
- Generates just under 2MW of energy
- Enough electricity to power 203 homes
- Located at the intersection of Highway 358 and Highway 69
The solar array will be a collection of 4,692 solar panels that will generate electricity as a holistic system. Each solar panel in the array captures sunlight and produces direct current electricity. The array is connected to a system that converts the direct current to usable alternating current electricity.
Bifacial Solar Panel
Evergy will install bifacial solar panels, which produce solar power from both sides of the panel. The bifacial panels will be mounted over pollinator-friendly ground cover, allowing for greater solar power generation over time due to the cooling effects of the blend versus other ground cover options. The panels will collect light directly from the sun and from light reflecting off the ground.
Each bifacial solar panel will be installed in a single-axis tracking system, which rotates the panels east and west throughout the day to capture more sunlight and generate more energy. Installing bifacial panels with single-axis trackers is an innovative strategy for optimizing the efficiency of the solar array as a whole.
Paragould Light Water & Cable has served the Paragould community since 1938, offering quality electric, water, wastewater, cable and internet services at reliably low rates.
Economic Development Corporation of Paragould is a private non-profit organization responsible for directing the economic development efforts for Paragould and Greene County by encouraging new business growth and establishing opportunities for industrial expansion.
Because cost savings is a crucial goal for PLWC, Evergy Energy Partners is able to offer a product that will help offset Paragould’s energy costs by providing affordable power to add to PLWC’s overall energy portfolio. Evergy has structured the agreement as a Build/Transfer Agreement for Paragould’s municipal power company, and the city of Paragould will offset their energy costs with clean and affordable energy, a win-win for all parties involved.
Now is the right time to invest in renewable energy for your municipality or cooperative. Learn more about Evergy Energy Partners’ renewable energy solutions.
- Brandon Sack
Brandon Sack serves as the Clean Energy Development Director at Evergy. He has been in the energy industry for over twenty-five (25) years and has gained experience through different roles in analytics, planning, energy trading and clean energy development. He was instrumental in the development and approval of Evergy Kansas’ Renewables Direct and Community Solar tariffs which both provide direct access to renewable energy to all customers. He now focuses on working with customers across the Midwest to help in their pursuit for clean, cost effective energy.