Lebanon ‘takes advantage’ of renewable energy, invests millions into solar arrays

The new solar array will help save Lebanon residents and businesses millions over the years.
The new solar array will help save Lebanon residents and businesses millions over the years.(PRNewswire)
Published: Oct. 18, 2023 at 9:58 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 18, 2023 at 10:00 AM EDT
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LEBANON, Ohio (WXIX) - The City of Lebanon announced Tuesday that it is investing $13.4 million into a 2024 solar project that will expand electrical options for residents.

Crews will begin to construct dozens of ground-mount solar panels across 40 acres of city-owned “undevelopable land” next spring.

Lebanon City Manager Scott Brunka says the project will help diversify electric options across the community by adding solar energy as an alternative.

“The City’s electric rates are approximately 30% lower than those in surrounding areas, and this project will help ensure that we continue to provide extremely competitive electric rates, and outstanding service, and take advantage of the renewable energy options that currently exist,” Brunka told FOX19 NOW.

Prior to finalizing the solar project, a feasibility study was made to see what the operational and financial impact of using solar arrays would be for residents and businesses.

“Operationally, it was determined to be highly feasible and would help advance the City’s objective of diversifying our electric power portfolio to ensure that we provide quality, cost-effective electric service to our community,” he said. “Financially, it is estimated that it will save our ratepayers over $25 million over the life of the solar arrays.”

Brunka says Athens and Bowling Green are starting similar projects as well.

The field of solar arrays will be located in the Turtlecreek floodplain on city-owned property zoned specifically for industrial use. Brunka says it is not located near residential developments.

In addition, the city has not received any backlash with the project after multiple public meetings were held to discuss the upcoming development, Brunka added.

The city selected Kokosing Solar to design and build the solar arrays.

A groundbreaking for the Lebanon Solar Array project will be on Oct. 23 at 10 a.m.

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