New Orleans Rooftop Solar Project

>>Public Notice
>> 1/9/2018 Community Presentation

Entergy New Orleans (“ENO”) filed an application with the New Orleans City Council on Friday, Oct. 6 2017 seeking approval to construct 5 megawatts of commercial-scale rooftop solar systems.  This project is part of our commitment to pursue up to 100 megawatts of renewable resources. On Tuesday January 9, 2018, beginning at 5:30 p.m., ENO is hosting a community meeting to discuss the project and answer questions from the public. The meeting will be held at SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY AT NEW ORLEANS – LAKE CAMPUS, COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, 6801 PRESS DRIVE, ROOM 100, New Orleans, LA 70126.  Members of the public are encouraged to submit questions in advance of this meeting via the portal below.

The project proposed in the application involves constructing multiple commercial-scale solar systems on rooftops in Orleans Parish.  ENO will own and operate the solar systems, which will likely be in the 100 kilowatts to 1-2 megawatt range.  The project will use existing buildings and properties, including customer-owned sites that will be secured under long-term leases, as well as one company-owned site that will serve as a demonstration project.  ENO is working with Brightergy Louisiana, LLC to identify candidate sites for systems.  The search will focus on warehousing/storage facilities, large retailers, K-12 schools and universities, and other similar locations with large rooftops (minimum roof size is 15,000 ft2).  Once sites are identified and receive necessary approvals, Brightergy and ENO will work with local companies to install the systems.

“Installing rooftop solar systems makes sense for us to pursue due to land constraints within Orleans Parish,” said Charles Rice, president and CEO of Entergy New Orleans.  “While expansive tracts of open land may be available to build a larger-scale solar project in other parts of the country, it just isn’t as feasible here due to higher costs and wetlands issues.  That’s why we’re pursuing several different solar resources, including this project.”

In addition to helping the company achieve its 100 megawatt commitment, several other potential benefits of the rooftop solar project include:

  • - allowing Entergy New Orleans to gain additional real-world experience with operating and maintaining these systems;

  • - siting the generating resources in Orleans Parish, near the load they will serve;

  • - assessing possible opportunities for siting projects to better achieve distribution grid benefits;

  • - being able to facilitate possible future energy-storage (battery) investments;

  • - economic development benefits to Orleans Parish through increased local investment and use of local labor;

  • - use of existing rooftops means that land is not taken out of commerce for other economic development purposes; and

  • - allowing Entergy New Orleans to work directly with its customers to help achieve their goals around sustainability and/or carbon reduction.

“As I’ve said before, we’re committed to including renewable technologies in our generation portfolio, but it has to be done in a manner that allows us to maintain reliability while keeping costs as low as possible for our customers,” said Rice.  “We believe the rooftop solar project will further diversify our generation portfolio while allowing us to engage with our customers in new and different ways, and we look forward to working with the city council and other stakeholders to move it forward.”

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