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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Solar farm lets investors buy panels

From an article by Tom Content in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

Delavan - Welcome to the field where sun power and the sunflower meet.

Well, not just one sunflower. More like thousands. And not just one solar panel, either. Thousands there, too.

Convergence Energy of Lake Geneva is building one of the largest solar projects in the state, and the first that allows individual investors to buy a stake in the project.

The Convergence Energy Solar Farm began construction last year on 14 acres near Dan Osborn's wholesale nursery.

The idea, said Steve Johnson, vice president of business development, is to provide a green-power investment opportunity for people who live in a condo or have too much shade to make solar power workable on their own home's roof.

By the time it's finished this year, it will be the second-largest solar project in Wisconsin, after Epic Systems' corporate campus solar project in Verona.

But instead of being developed by one large company, this project is being built, piece by piece, as investors take a stake in the project.

"It's a way for a small investor to have a part in it all," said investor Dave Smith of Libertyville, Ill. "When you live in a town home like I do, there's nothing you can really do."

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