First Electric Cooperative signs with Today’s Power for a 1-MW solar project

First Electric Cooperative out of Arkansas recently entered into a service agreement with Arkansas-based Today’s Power Inc. (TPI) to install a 1-MW (ac) solar array.

“First Electric exists to serve our members and deliver electricity in the most affordable manner possible,” said Don Crabbe, president/CEO of First Electric in a Feb. 9 statement. “The TPI solution will enable our cooperative to realize cost savings by reducing the demand for wholesale power and assisting in peak shaving. The low after-tax installed cost, the safety of the low-voltage design and the use of experienced construction crews to install the system were key factors in our decision.”

The 3,840-panel system is scheduled to be operational in late fall. The TPI system will involve approximately five acres near Benton, Ark.

“Our Ten K Solar REFLECT 26 photovoltaic system is very efficient and requires much less land than other solar array energy options,” said Michael Henderson, president of TPI. “First Electric’s customized system was designed to minimize demand billing from its wholesale power provider.”

According to Henderson, First Electric is one of many electric cooperatives launching TPI-based solar programs across the country. He said TPI offers electric cooperatives opportunities to realize savings that previously were only available to taxable companies.

Today’s Power is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Arkansas Electric Cooperatives Inc. (AECI), a Little Rock-based utility service cooperative owned by 17 Arkansas electric distribution cooperatives. TPI is an authorized distributor and installer for TKS photovoltaic systems.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.