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Grand Rapids activates new solar array at Lake Michigan Filtration Plant

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Courtesy of the City of Grand Rapids
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The water treatment facility will eliminate 1,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.

In an effort to run on 100% renewable energy by the year 2025, the City of Grand Rapids Thursday flipped the switch on a new solar array at its Lake Michigan Filtration Plant.

Located in West Olive, officials say the water treatment facility will eliminate 1,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent. To put that number in perspective, that's the amount produced by approximately 230 passenger vehicles.

Over the next 24 years, the nearly megawatt array is expected to generate over $1.5 million in net savings. It’s also estimated to produce 1.5 million kilowatt hours per year, increasing the city’s renewable energy performance by 3.5%.

“Getting more solar installed on city facilities has been a priority of mine for a long time," said Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss at the dedication. "Installing a large-scale solar array at the Lake Michigan Filtration Plant is a huge component of our strategy to achieve that goal.”

The move comes in the midst of a statewide push for cleaner energy, as earlier this spring, Governor Gretchen Whitmer unveiled the Michigan Healthy Climate Plan–one prioritizing clean energy and land conservation, putting the state on the path to carbon neutrality by 2050.

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