The Little Rock Water Reclamation Authority will enter into a solar service agreement that will save the utility $2.7 million over the next 25 years.
The utility’s board of commissioners on Friday approved the contract with Entegrity Energy Partners LLC wherein the sewer authority will buy solar energy from the company at a rate of 5.4 cents per kilowatt hour. The energy company will provide an estimated 2.5 million kilowatt hours per year.
Entegrity will own and operate the facility while the utility will buy the power, authority chief operating officer Howell Anderson said.
Buying solar power is 1.8 cents cheaper per kilowatt hour than purchasing power from Entergy, he said.
“That doesn’t sound like a lot, but when you multiply it by 2.5 million kilowatt hours, it starts adding up,” Anderson said.
The water reclamation authority previously considered building its own solar facility, but going through Entegrity is advantageous because it means the utility can avoid borrowing money to make a capital investment and start reaping the savings right away.
The move is expected to save the utility $45,000 in 2020 and could help delay future rate increases, Anderson said.