When meter aggregation (NEM-A) was released in early 2014, there were a lot of questions. What are the guidelines? How will the billing work? What qualifies? With all of these question comes uncertainty, and that makes a large investment in a commercial solar project a tough decision to make. It takes a person that is willing to put a lot of faith and trust into their decisions. After pricing and interviewing a number of solar integrators, Pickett Solar was honored to be chosen by Simon Vander Woude of Merced, California to guide his commercial solar project though this new program.
What is NEM-A
Meter aggregation allowed Vander Woude Dairy to install one large solar array and then electronically distribute the kWh production to meters that are on contiguous parcels of land. Since the dairy grows its own feed and has numerous wells in the adjacent area, this new program made a lot of sense. For further details on meter aggregation visit our blog article here.
The new NEM-A program proved to be a challenge. As the solar project started, the utility company was still developing their own process and guidelines. Proof of property ownership and pairing of utility bills added to an already complex process that is not for the unexperienced.
Commitment to Sustainability
In the news, dairies get a bad rap for being a detriment to our environment. What may surprise many is how sustainability is a big part of dairy operations. Water used at the dairy is treated then reused in the adjacent fields to grow feed for the cows. The manure is treated and 100% recycled. Adding a commercial solar system to the operation furthers Vander Woude Dairy’s commitment to what is already a very sustainable business.
Total Project Statistics
System size: 1.1 megawatts
Solar panels: 3,690
Mounting: Single axis tracker
Offsets: 2,123,424 KW Hours will be saved annually, enough to power 265 homes for a year