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Fremont looks to build solar farm

Posted at 6:54 PM, Jun 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-01 20:07:03-04

The City of Fremont is looking to build a solar farm.

Fremont currently uses coal for power, but General Manager of Utilities, Brian Newton, said they want to branch out.

“So we thought we really need to diversify, especially into renewable energy, so we are reaching out to bring in wing and the other option is solar,” he said, “my goal would to be primarily to have residents subscribe, but certainly businesses, we would like to have them coming as well.”

Newton said they have a grant from the National Renewable Energy Lab to do a study on how expensive the solar farm would be and if it's what the people in Fremont want.

“I think it sounds like a neat idea, I mean solar helps with the environment and everything,” said Deann Reese.

“It’s going along with the progress of solar and, it's wonderful I think so,” said Mary Ann Ruppert.

The coal plants in Fremont produce about 110 MW of power but the solar farm would be a smaller scale and produce bout one megawatt, which is about 140 homes.

“This would be a better attraction than putting a solar panel on their roof, because they may have trees, or their roof doesn't face south, or they don't like holes in their roof,” said Newton.

He also said they are looking at putting the farm at the Fremont airport where there are not obstruction from the sun and plenty of space to put the solar panels.

“This is adapting and I say it doesn't replace out coal, it simply augments, and if we look at producing from a cleaner source obviously wind and solar have to be a key ingredient,” said Newton.

The study should last all summer and the city will have an idea about the solar farm and the support behind it.