The promise of limitless and inexpensive energy from the sun has been with us for as long as most of us can remember. Significant research and development has taken place to utilize this resource, and costs are rapidly decreasing making it a more feasible option. Solar technology simply makes use of sunlight to generate electricity, provide hot water, or heat, cool and light buildings.
In North Dakota, the major applications are photovoltaic electricity generation, passive solar design and daylighting, and solar thermal and hot water heat. Recently, Cass County Electric Cooperative began installation of a 102 kW community solar garden, called Prairie Sun Community Solar. Members of the coop can lease a panel and receive the benefits of solar energy without worrying about installation and maintenance. If you are interested in installing solar on your home, please view the EERC’s report “Solar PV in North Dakota" for more information.