Dominion Virginia Power says it is seeking to launch a program under which the utility would lease rooftops and grounds of commercial businesses and public facilities for solar arrays. The company made its request for approval this week to the Virginia State Corporation Commission.
The initiative would be part of a multi-year program designed to help expand the company's understanding of community-based solar energy, study its impact and assess its benefits. Although specific locations have not yet been identified, at least four of the solar sites would be located in community settings, such as local government buildings, schools, community associations, neighborhood associations or nonprofit organizations, Dominion Virginia Power says.Â
In all, the company plans to install solar arrays on 30 to 50 sites in its service area. Participants would receive payment for leasing space for the solar panels, and a Web-enabled monitor located at the facility would display information about the installation's output.
Throughout the program, the company would report the study results of each project to the commission annually. The company would continue to own and operate the solar panels as generation facilities after a site has been operating for five years.
The company's application also includes plans for a new rate under development in which the company would purchase solar energy from customers who have panels on their property.
Additional information about the proposed program is available here.