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Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) selected Dakota Electric Association to participate in a solar study that seeks to implement a solar business model that will provide value to both utilities and those who seek to install solar.

Dakota Electric, along with Steele Waseca Cooperative Electric, Owatonna, both Great River Energy cooperatives, were selected to participate in the RMI study to be conducted throughout 2014.

The purpose of the project is to create opportunities for optimizing the value of solar photovoltaic while minimizing costs for the benefit of the cooperative and its members. The study will examine pricing and business models, providing an analysis of these factors to determine the best way all parties can benefit from solar installations. The goal is to develop a working model that can be expanded to other utilities around the country.

“Dakota Electric is honored to be selected to participate in the study,” said Mike Fosse, Dakota Electric’s vice president of Energy and Member Services. “We feel this research will provide valuable information for utilities and utility customers in planning future solar projects.”   

“We are very excited to partner with Dakota Electric on this important work,” said Jon Creyts, managing director at RMI. “Our aim is to provide real-world examples that broaden utility and regulator understanding of how solar can be economically integrated into the electricity generation mix.”

The study is expected to conclude later this year.