MADISON, Wis. (July 22, 2021) – Ownership of the Bear Creek Solar Project in Richland County officially transitioned from Savion, LLC to Alliant Energy. This milestone follows recent approval from the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSCW) on Alliant Energy’s filing for 675 megawatts of solar generation. It also marks the beginning of construction on the 50-megawatt (MW) solar project which is located in the Town of Buena Vista and Village of Lone Rock within Richland County.
“It has been a pleasure working with Savion throughout the development phase of this project,” stated Ben Lipari, director of Project Development and Customer Solutions at Alliant Energy. “Now, as we become the project owner, we turn our attention toward working with the community and constructing this project. It’s a smart investment for our customers, creates local jobs and provides shared revenues to the town, village and county. It’s also a critical part of our sustainable path forward.”
The project, recently re-named Bear Creek Solar after the near-by class 1 trout stream that flows from the Wisconsin River, will be constructed by Burns & McDonnell. Once operational, this 50 MW project will generate enough electricity to power approximately 12,000 Wisconsin homes. It will also provide annual lease payments to landowners for decades. In addition, the Town of Buena Vista, Village of Lone Rock and Richland County will benefit from shared revenues – a combined estimated $200,000 annually once the project becomes operational. The communities can use the funds, as deemed appropriate, by local government officials.
“The Savion team wants to thank Alliant Energy for its continued investment in renewable energy generation in Wisconsin,” said Scott Zeimetz, chief development officer for Savion. “The successful closing of Bear Creek Solar Project marks an important milestone in Alliant Energy’s goal to build more than 1,000 megawatts of solar power in the state by the end of 2023. We are proud to be part of that effort. Our gratitude and appreciation go out to the Richland County community for their engagement and hard work to bring this solar project to the region.”
In addition to the Bear Creek solar project, Alliant Energy has contracted Burns & McDonnell to construct the North Rock and Wood County Solar Projects. For more information, visit Alliant Energy’s solar webpage.
In May 2020, Alliant Energy introduced its plan to construct six large-scale solar projects in Wisconsin. Then, in March 2021, the company announced plans to build out six more projects – making Alliant Energy the largest owner and operator of solar energy in the state of Wisconsin. According to the company, it’s part of the Clean Energy Blueprint, an outline of their acceleration and transition to clean energy.
In total, Alliant Energy has proposed 12 solar projects, planned for nine Wisconsin counties. Collectively, they will add nearly 1,100 MW of solar energy generation to the state’s energy grid – enough to power nearly 300,000 homes. Along with the rest of the Clean Energy Blueprint, these projects will help customers avoid more than $2 billion in long-term costs. They’ll also deliver steady revenue through new construction opportunities, create an estimated 2,000 construction jobs, and provide approximately $300 million in revenues to local communities and landowners over an estimated project lifespan of 30 years.
Alliant Energy notes that these projects demonstrate the company’s commitment to advancing clean energy and strengthening the communities they serve. In addition, Alliant Energy says that this investment in solar provides customers with reliable, environmentally friendly energy long into the future.
With increasing sustainability expectations from customers and businesses, the time is now to transition to more renewable energy generation. Alliant Energy is committed to elevating its sustainable practices and cost-effectively accelerating renewable energy generation while reducing carbon emissions.
Solar generating projects are virtually noiseless. They generate zero emissions, odors or harmful byproducts. During operation, planted prairie grasses and pollinators will create a hospitable environment for pollinating insects and birds. When the project reaches the end of its useful life (approximately 30 years), per regulatory agreement, Alliant Energy will remove the equipment and complete the land restoration process so it can be used as desired, including for agriculture.