Bedford installing more than 10,000 solar panels

Town officials say customers will have a new option to power

BEDFORD, Va. – The town of Bedford is providing a new form of renewable energy for its customers. Over 10,000 solar panels are in the process of being placed in Bedford’s now solar farm. Town officials say customers will have a new option to power.

A month ago, there was nothing on the town’s 20 acres of land. Now they’re near the end of their solar project. It is putting up more than 10,000 solar panels to provide power for residents.

For years their property sat unused. After three years of planning the Town of Bedford signed a contract with a North Carolina solar company. Together they are generating a three megawatt facility that will give enough power for 500 homes. A tracking system will have the panels tilt and follow the sun throughout the day. Town officials say the energy will be interconnected through its distribution system. This means it will feed customers the power directly and it will eliminate their dependence on fossil fuels. 
Electric utility officials say the solar panels are expected to operate for a minimum of 20 years. 

"Our plan is to offer two basic options. One would be 50 percent of their energy as renewable and another will be 100 percent of their energy as renewable. And that's what we're working towards. So sometime in the next say 60 days or so we plan to offer that to our customers,” John Wagner, director of electric utility for the town of Bedford, said.

The developer will be testing the panels around Thanksgiving, and hope to have them running by the end of the year. 

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