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Solar Legacy Projects

Solar Legacy Projects are solar energy installations built on community institutions like schools, libraries, or churches. They have been designed and built by local stakeholders.  We call them “legacy” projects because solar generates pollution-free electricity for the community and future generations long after it’s installed –– often 30 years or more. 

You too can help support these projects through our Slice of Sun Solar Bonds program.  Any member can earn up to 5% interest on their bonds purchased through the co-op. Your contribution by purchasing solar bonds allows us to help finance these community projects. You can choose to keep your interest or donate it to a non-profit of your choosing, or event donate the entire bond to a non-profit. Or, you can include your bond in your estate planning. Lots of ways to go green, to earn green, and to help community organizations! 

So even if you live in the shade you can actively help grow solar energy in Wisconsin!  Learn more about the Slice of Sun Solar Bonds program


Solar panels on Art Ventures Retreat Center at Bethel Horizons, Dodgeville

Bethel Horizons

LOCATION: Dodgeville, Wisconsin  |  CAPACITY: 40 kW  |  COMPLETION DATE: October 2018

SOLAR CONTRACTOR:
Logo_WES Engineering

 

 

 

 

The Prairie Center and the Venture Arts Retreat Center will each be generating about 50% of their own power.

Bethel Horizons is located on more than 548 acres bordering Governor Dodge State Park. Our mission is to develop and perpetuate a physical, social, intellectual, and spiritual environment which will strengthen and enhance the understanding of a person’s proper relation to nature, to self, to others and to God.”

(From Solar for Good grant)

Horizons is affiliated with Bethel Lutheran Church, Madison, Wisconsin and Lutheran Outdoor Ministries, an association of ELCA camps across the country.

Installing a solar energy solution fits perfectly into our general mission and our goal of Caring for Creation. As we strive to foster a better understanding of nature, it not only will help us be better stewards of our financial resources, it will allow an educational opportunity for the many thousands of visitors to our facility. We have a full time environmental educator on staff that will be able to incorporate the use of solar energy first hand into our programs.

Project Impact

This project will directly impact the populations Bethel Horizons serves. During the summer program, 65% of our campers receive some form of financial assistance to attend camp. This project will provide a unique opportunity for Bethel Horizons to expose our youth to this technology to help them understand how it works and the positive impact that it has on our environment. In addition, being in rural Wisconsin, this project can serve as an example for other rural entities about how realistic a project like this could be for their facilities.

Publicity and Education: Bethel Horizons would see this solar array as a way for us to educate others about the importance of renewable energy projects like this one. With a full time Environmental Education Director, Bethel Horizons will be able to develop sustainable programming that can be shared with groups that we serve. In addition, Bethel Horizons would be open to having an event that highlights this project for the general public. We would do this in conjunction with those who have helped us to manage this project.

Member WES Engineering of Madison will be installing this project that will cover 2 buildings with 20 kilowatts each. The Prairie Center and the Venture Arts Retreat Center will each be generating about 50% of their own power for their electrical needs at these two sites.  Our Co-op will be making $25,000 in loans to this project.

Final Western Dane County Solar Group Buy Webinar Scheduled for September 15th

Webinar Scheduled for September 15th from 6:30-7:30pm

Save money on solar installation through the Western Dane County Group Buy! Our free webinar will explain how. Attend and receive a free solar assessment.

This is the last year for you to take advantage of the 26% Federal Tax Incentive, (it goes down next year) and this year’s state grant money for energy investments is running low, so the window is closing on this opportunity. Read more

Next Western Dane County Solar Group Buy Webinars Scheduled for June 3rd and June 14th

If you live in western Dane County and have ever thought about adding solar to your home, this is the year to do it. Legacy Solar Co-op and community volunteers from the Town of Vermont’s Climate Action Committee have partnered with All Sky Energy and Eagle Point Solar to offer deep discounts and special financing options on solar projects in 2020. The goal of this group buy is to add half a megawatt of solar to Wisconsin’s energy mix. Read more

Solar Group Buy Webinar Will Take Place on May 14th for Western Dane County Residents

If you live in western Dane County and have ever thought about adding solar to your home, this is the year to do it. Legacy Solar Co-op and community volunteers from the Town of Vermont’s Climate Action Committee have partnered with All Sky Energy and Eagle Point Solar to offer deep discounts and special financing options on solar projects in 2020. The goal of this group buy is to add half a megawatt of solar to Wisconsin’s energy mix. Read more

Christ Lutheran Church Spring Green: View from the Road

Christ Lutheran Church of Spring Green

LOCATION: Spring Green, Wisconsin   |   CAPACITY: 18 kW   |   COMPLETION DATE: December 2018
SOLAR CONTRACTOR:
Logo_WES Engineering

 

 

 

Christ Lutheran Church has served the Spring Green, WI community for 135 years. In 2018, the co-op began planning another phase of their history: generating power from the sun. The resulting project should generate roughly 60% of the church’s electricity and set a great example of environmental stewardship for the community and for other congregations. Read more

Announcing the Western Dane County Group Buy Program

Peter Fiala, 4/29/20

The Western Dane County Group Buy Program was announced on April 28, 2020 at the third in a series of Climate Action Workshops, which took place via webinar.

Legacy Solar Co-op (LSC), in conjunction with the Town of Vermont’s Climate Action Committee and other communities, is proud to offer the residents of western Dane County a Group Buy Program for the installation of new, residential solar arrays at a lower price than a typical residential installation. This program will last from May through December 2020.

The goal of the program is to increase solar education and adoption in the communities of Western Dane County, including Vermont Township, Middleton, Mount Horeb, Black Earth, Blue Mounds, Mazomanie, Cross Plains, Verona, Berry, Springdale and the surrounding area.

Read more.

Update from Kurt

LSC Sells Switch-to-Solar (S2S) RECs to Bayfield County

(This is the first of a 4-month series on climate or carbon offsets and the S2S program)

By Kurt Reinhold, President of Legacy Solar Wisconsin Cooperative, 3/19/20

This month, Bayfield County officially completed its goal of 100% Carbon Free Electricity operations by purchasing the final 50 Megawatt-hours* of solar offsets (solar RECs) from Legacy Solar Cooperative’s Switch-to-Solar REC inventory.  The solar electricity that was purchased by Bayfield County was generated in Monona, Wisconsin by rooftop solar in 2018 and 2019.

*The actual number of kWhs of solar purchased is 49,500 (equal to 49.5 MWh).

For many, this announcement may be just as impressive as it is confusing to understand.  At some point, everybody will have asked themselves, “what does Carbon Neutral even mean”?  Is it the same as “Net Zero” emissions or even the newer term “Climate Neutral”?  And, how did Bayfield County calculate their emissions as well as their achievement of neutrality?

Read more

Climate Action 3-Part Workshop

Climate Action 3-Part Workshop – Feb. 25, March 31 & April 28, 2020

Learn what others are doing today, locally and nationally. Get practical advice about energy efficiency, adding renewable energy sources, and available incentives. Focus on actions you can take at your home, at your business and in our community today to help reduce our impact on our environment.

Building on two climate change meetings held last year in Cross Plains, this 3-step workshop will unfold over three months on three evenings.

This series is being put on for interested residents and businesses in Cross Plains, Black Earth, Mazomanie, Mt. Horeb and neighboring townships. Read more

Update from Nick

Going Beyond Rooftop Solar – Making the Decision 

By Nick Hein, 2/26/20

A year after Ken and Barb installed their solar array with the help of Legacy Solar Co-op, it’s been performing even better than expected -producing more than 100% of their electric needs. That’s gotten them thinking, since their utility doesn’t pay them as much for the excess, they’d like to use it to offset (or eliminate) their natural gas usage. They wonder if replacing their current furnace, water heater and appliances with the most efficient models available, their rooftop array could produce all the energy they need to use in a year. Then they could completely disconnect the natural gas service.* So it looks like they could become 100% net-zero, and now the question is whether they should. Let’s join Ken and Barb one evening as they discuss it. Read more

Renew Wisconsin

Congratulations to LSC Members Honored at the 2020 Renewable Energy Summit

Jackie Harrison-Jewell, 2/26/20

Congratulations to LSC Members Honored at the 2020 Renewable Energy Summit Renewable Energy Summit, presented by RENEW Wisconsin, is a one-day event that brings together people who work in, or are interested in the growth and success of renewable energy in Wisconsin, from policy makers to vendors, educators and concerned citizens. This year’s event was held on Thursday, January 16th and Legacy Solar Co-op was proud to be there.

We would like to congratulate several of our members who were recognized during the summit. Read more