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How we utilize existing infrastructure in clean energy transition

The utility industry has gone through large-scale shifts over the past century. From how to generate energy to the methods for distributing electricity and gas to customers across the U.S., utilities are evolving to meet the needs of customers.

Fossil fuels such as coal are becoming less common as an energy source, while natural gas, wind and solar power are becoming more prevalent. Battery storage has also begun to enter the industry as a cost-effective solution to meet peak energy demand.

With these changes, existing infrastructure or brownfield sites can now be repurposed to strengthen the grid of the future. Below are a few projects that highlight the changes we’re making across Wisconsin and Iowa:

Palo, Iowa
NextEra Energy Resources is developing the Duane Arnold Solar Project, a 200-megawatt (MW) solar project with 75 MW of battery storage, on the site of the former nuclear power plant. In November 2021, we announced our intentions to purchase the project, which is the largest solar and battery storage facility in the state.

Sheboygan, Wis.
The soon-to-be-retired Edgewater Generating Facility operated for almost a century on coal. Now we are redeveloping a portion of the property as a 99-MW battery energy storage system, which will diversify and complement our generation portfolio.

Perry, Iowa
The city of Perry has found a way to generate energy at a remediated brownfield site near the Raccoon River Valley Trail. In partnership with our Alliant Energy® Customer-Hosted Renewables program, this seven-acre site situated on a decades-old railroad hub, will turn into a highly visible 1-MW solar project.

Beloit, Wis.
Our 2.3-MW Rock River Solar Project sits on top of a closed landfill site, representing another step toward modernizing our town of Beloit energy campus. When this project began operations in the winter of 2016, it was the largest solar generating site in Wisconsin.

Clean Energy Blueprint
Making these investments in locations with existing infrastructure, or in places where development is constrained, helps us deliver on our purpose to serve our customers and build stronger communities. We will continue to search for opportunities to cost-effectively develop renewable resources to keep up with evolving customer expectations.

By implementing our Clean Energy Blueprint, we are able to avoid larger investments in aging facilities, accelerate the transition to cleaner energy, and provide customers with the reliable energy they’ve grown to expect.
Chris is a Communications Partner specializing in Alliant Energy’s renewable investments. Coming from a journalism background, he’s excited to tell the story of Alliant Energy’s Clean Energy Blueprint and other renewable trends in new and exciting ways.

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