Illinois American Water completes new solar field to reduce energy costs

Thursday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the project’s completion
Published: May. 12, 2022 at 5:52 PM CDT
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PEORIA (WEEK) - The sun was shining full force on a brand new solar field in Peoria. Illinois American Water partnered with Sol Systems to install its second solar field project.

Planning began in 2019 and Thursday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the project’s completion. It takes a lot of energy to send water to homes, and now the energy helping to do that is clean.

Karen Cotton, the Illinois American Water Spokesperson, said “But to get water to taps, to fire hydrants, to manufacturers, to customers, it takes a lot of energy. So to be able to reduce our energy use, to use solar to contribute to that energy use, that’s great for the environment. That’s great for our customers bills.” The field is 12 acres wide, and the panels tilt with the sun like a sunflower.

She also added “Here on Peoria and Champaign County we have two fields, and they’re the biggest in the footprint of American Water and that’s in over 40 states of our operations.” The two new solar fields will reduce greenhouse gas emissions equal to 16,000 cars and over 8 million gallons of gasoline over the next 15 years.

The other goal is to reduce energy costs and pass the savings along to customers.

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