Solar Energy Generation in

According to a sun index developed for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) using data provided by NREL's Renewable Resource Data Center, Nebraska is ranked thirteenth in the nation with the greatest energy potential from solar power.

A map is available showing the community solar projects in Nebraska.

Note: Data is reported in AC, not DC.

Operational Projects (1 Megawatt or More)

  • Custer County: A 2,325–kilowatt (2.325–megawatt) solar system was installed in Custer County by Custer Public Power District.
  • Fort Calhoun: The 5,000–kilowatt (or 5–megawatt) Fort Calhoun Community Solar Facility became operational in late December of 2019 east of Fort Calhoun. Omaha Public Power District has contracted to buy the solar energy.
  • Fremont: In 2018, Fremont launched a 1.32–megawatt community solar farm.
  • Fremont: With overflowing demand, Fremont launched a 1,000–kilowatt (1 megawatt) community solar project.
  • Grand Island: A 1,000–kilowatt (1–megawatt) community solar project became operational.
  • Hastings: A 2,500–kilowatt (2.5–megawatt) community solar project became operational in September 2019.
  • Kearney: In December, 2017, Kearney's solar farm became operational. It is a 5,700–kilowatt (5.7–megawatt) electrical generation project by Nebraska Public Power District partnering with SoCore Energy.
  • Lexington: A 3,750–kilowatt (3.75–megawatt) community solar project became operational.
  • Lincoln: In the summer of 2016, Lincoln Electric System’s Holdrege Solar Center, a 3,600–kilowatt (3.6–megawatt) generation community solar project, was built at Northwest 75th and Holdrege Streets in Lincoln. Lincoln Electric System signed a power purchase agreement to buy the power from the solar energy farm.
  • Schuyler: A 460–kilowatt community solar project became commercially operational on December 21, 2018.
  • Scottsbluff: A 4,375–kilowatt (4.375–megawatt) community solar project went online March 1, 2020.
  • South Sioux City: In January of 2017, a 2,000–kilowatt (2–megawatt) solar array became operational in the city of South Sioux City.
  • Superior: A 1,000–kilowatt (1–megawatt) community solar project became operational in 2018.

Committed Projects

  • Bellwood: A 174.5–megawatt solar facility is planned.
  • Gothenburg: A 764–kilowatt community solar facility Phase II is planned.
  • Grand Island: A 1,301.3–kilowatt solar array is planned.
  • Hastings: A 1,500–kilowatt community solar facility Phase I is planned.
  • Hemingford: A 2,600–kilowatt (2.6–megawatt) community solar project is planned and expected to be operational at the end of April 2020.
  • Lexington: Sol CES Projects LLC is planning to construct a one–megawatt facility.
  • Omaha: Omaha Public Power District is planning to construct a 400– to 600–megawatts solar farm by 2024.
  • Scribner: A 664–kilowatt community solar project and battery storage is planned.
  • Superior: A 1,248–kilowatt solar array is planned.
  • Tekamah: A 664–kilowatt community solar project and battery storage is planned.
  • Walthill: Walthill is planning a 70–kilowatt community solar project.
  • York: A 3,200–kilowatt (3.2–megawatt) community solar project is planned by the Nebraska Public Power District and York. Building is to start 2021–2022.

Projects Under Development

  • Battle Creek: SunVest Solar Inc. is planning to install a 2–megawatt solar project north of Battle Creek, a mile south of the Pierce County line.
  • Clay County: APEX Clean Energy is seeking permission to construct a 305–megawatt solar project in Clay County.
  • Elgin: Antelope County's first solar farm is planned to be located west of Elgin. The farm is expected to generate 2 megawatts and interconnect to Elkhorn Rural Public Power District's distribution network.
  • Gordon: A 48–kilowatt solar project is planned for Gordon's wastewater treatment plant. The plant will use the total generation.
  • Lincoln: The 230–megawatt Salt Creek Solar project would be located on the east side of Lancaster County. This project could create enough energy to power 30,000 homes.
  • Norfolk: SunVest Solar Inc. is planning a 3–megawatt solar facility just south of Norfolk in Madison County.
  • Norfolk: The Nebraska Pubic Power District, the City of Norfolk, and three companies—Mesner Development Co., GenPro Energy Solutions, and Sol Systems—are collaborating under the umbrella of N Solar. They are planning an 8.5–megawatt community solar project. This project could be operational by the end of 2021. It is to be located on land at the city's well field.
  • Pierce County: A 443–megawatt solar array, named the Goldenrod Solar Energy Center, has been proposed to be operational by 2023. It is estimated that the solar project will power about 80,000 households.

Operational Projects (Less Than 1 Megawatt)

  • Alexandria: A 2.12–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Kerwood residence in Alexandria.
  • Allen: A 6–kilowatt solar system was installed by Genesis Enterprises LLC, owned by Kevin and Barb Connot of Allen, Nebraska.
  • Ashland: A 10.6–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Wayne and Janece Mollhoff's home and shop in Ashland. About half the power produced by the system should net–zero their home.
  • Atkinson: A 180–kilowatt community solar project became operational.
  • Aurora: A 500–kilowatt community solar project became operational at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. This project was designed to offset 84 percent of the Plant's electricity cost.
  • Aurora: Rose Chiropractic Center in Aurora had a new roof installed along with 84 solar panels, each measuring 39 inches wide by 5–1/2 feet in length. Laid side by side and connected in a grid linked to what looks like a traditional electrical panel, the array atop Rose Chiropractic measures 70 by 22 feet. The 32–kilowatt system was installed by Ron Rose, the husband of the business owner Jo.
  • Belgrade: A 15–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Knopik farm near Belgrade.
  • Bellevue: A 7–kilowatt solar grid-tied system was installed by Morrissey Engineering on the Public Safety Building at 1510 Wall Street in Bellevue.
  • Benedict: A 25–kilowatt solar photovoltaic system consisting of 96 solar panels mounted on two rows of gray metal frames was installed on the Hammond farm operation west of Benedict.
  • Bradshaw: In 2017, a 25–kilowatt solar panel system was installed at the Harmony Nursery & Daylily Farm in Bradshaw.
  • Callaway: In 2016, a 600–kilowatt solar system was installed on the Pandorf Land & Cattle farm near Callaway.
  • Callaway: In 2016, a 25–kilowatt solar panel system was installed on the Jim Jenkins ranch near Callaway.
  • Central City: A total of 600 kilowatts was installed in Central City. A 200–kilowatt solar system consisting of 800 solar panels was installed on an abandoned parking lot in Central City. Property developer, Cliff Mesner, worked with residents, local businesses, and the city–owned utility. Alongside this solar system, the City of Central City added an additional 400–kilowatts of solar power.
  • Clatonia: The Lindenmuth residence in Clatonia has a 1.7–kilowatt photovoltaic system.
  • Craig: A 10–kilowatt solar array was installed on a family farm just outside the small Village of Craig.
  • Crete: In March 2013, Doane College installed a 1.5–kilowatt photovoltaic system to offset the use of vampires circuits on campus and then, in July of 2014, added 3 kilowatts to this system for a total of 4.5 kilowatts.
  • Custer County: A 650–kilowatt array was installed on the Blakeman ranch in Custer County.
  • Elkhorn: The Elkhorn Service Center, operated by the Omaha Public Power District, started generating electricity from two solar photovoltaic panels on June 13, 2002. The electricity is consumed by a small facility located at the Elkhorn Service Center and offsets only a small portion of the electricity the Center needs. Each of the two panels is rated at 2.4 kilowatts capacity for a total of 4.8 kilowatts. The panels have a capacity factor of 14 to 15 percent. The unused capacity could have been due to being out of service, operating at reduced output for part of the time due to equipment failures, or routine maintenance. Most likely the panels were capable of producing electricity, but its fuel, sunlight, was not available.
  • Gering: A net–zero energy house in Gering has a residential 5–kilowatt photovoltaic system which generates enough electricity to make the home a net–zero energy house.
  • Gothenburg: A 468–kilowatt community solar project became operational.
  • Gothenburg: A 462–kilowatt community solar project became operational.
  • Hartington: Solar photovoltaic systems were installed on the Kleinschmit Hartington–area farm and ranch consisting of 36 panels totalling 9 kilowatts.
  • Holdrege: A 100–kilowatt community solar project became operational.
  • Keith County: In 2016, a 16–kilowatt system was installed on the Eldon J. and Vivien Peterson ranch in Keith County.
  • Lincoln: A community solar project was installed by a group of residents of Capitol Beach in Lincoln, who have been incorporated as Beach Solar LLC. It will generate 100 kilowatts of energy that will be sold to Lincoln Electric System.
  • Lincoln: A 100–kilowatt solar energy array owned by JAX Properties was installed at 1900 Saltillo Road in Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: A 25–kilowatt solar array was installed at the Unitarian Church of Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: The Lincoln Electric System added 50 kilowatts of solar energy through a rooftop solar array commissioned in early December 2014 on the LES Walter A. Canney Service Center at 27th and Fairfield Streets in north Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: The University of Nebraska–Lincoln installed 162 photovoltaic solar panels (or approximately 39 kilowatts) on their animal science building. The system is located on the University's east campus. It was installed by Boyd Jones Construction.
  • Lincoln: A 25–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Scott Otley and Ruth Ann Thompson's home near Lincoln. Only 10 kilowatts are needed to net–zero their home so the rest of the power is sent back to the grid.
  • Lincoln: In the summer of 2015, a 10–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Tim and Carol Hinkle's residence just east of Lincoln. The system is projected to provide over 15,000 kilowatthours of power per year, or around 70 percent of the home’s electrical requirements.
  • Lincoln: The Lincoln Police Department's Center Team Station installed 40 solar panels (a 10–kilowatt photovoltaic system) in June 2013 on one of Lincoln's most energy–efficient buildings, with geothermal heating and cooling. The array faces south, on 27th and Holdrege Streets. The installation is expected to deliver up to a quarter of the electrical power needs for the building.
  • Lincoln: A rooftop 6.9–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Bob's garage in Northwest Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: A rooftop 5.7–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Tim's home in Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: A 5.7–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Pipher's residence in Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: A 5.3–kilowatt dual–axis tracking photovoltaic system was installed at the Total Manufacturing Company (TMCO) in the Haymarket District in Lincoln by SWT Energy Inc. and was funded in part by Lincoln Electric System's sustainable energy program.
  • Lincoln: The Jayne Snyder Trail Center is a feature of the Antelope Valley Union Plaza in the City of Lincoln. A 4.8–kilowatt solar energy system was installed on the roof of the Center. This installation should deliver up to half the regular electrical power needs of the building. The project was completed in 2012 by SWT Energy Incorporated.
  • Lincoln: A 4–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Mark's roof on Capitol Beach in Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: Schantell's residence in Lincoln has a 4–kilowatt photovoltaic system.
  • Lincoln: Bahensky's residence in Lincoln has a 4–kilowatt photovoltaic system.
  • Lincoln: A rooftop 3.5–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Jessica's house in South Lincoln.
  • Lincoln: At the Hyde Memorial Observatory, solar panels began generating electricity at 2:02 p.m. CST on March 13, 2003. The project is a joint venture of Lincoln Electric System, Hyde Observatory Board, Lincoln Parks and Recreation, Information Analytics Incorporated, and Alltel. The 2.2–kilowatt photovoltaic system generated nearly 40 percent of the observatory's electricity needs in the first five years of operation. The photovoltaic system is designed to generate 2 kilowatts of electricity producing about half of the observatory's annual electrical needs. The solar panels will produce electricity during daylight hours and pass that electricity to an output meter where it is then placed back into Lincoln's electric grid. The system will operate at maximum production during the daytime when the observatory's energy use is at a minimum. The PV system replaces an older, passive solar heating system that had begun to deteriorate after 25 years of service. Unlike the old system, which generated only heat energy, the new PV system generates electricity to power the observatory and feeds any excess or unused electricity into Lincoln's grid. The panels are designed to withstand the impact of a one–inch hailstone, and the panels carry a 20–year warranty. Lincoln Electric System funded the system as a demonstration project. Additional project partners include Information Analytics who is installing the computers and web interface, and Alltel who has agreed to provide a DSL service to the observatory.
  • Lincoln: Tim Michel's home in Lincoln has a 1.8–kilowatt photovoltaic system.
  • Lincoln: The City of Lincoln StarTran transit system had solar panels installed by Dixon Power Systems to one of their bus shelters. The bus shelter is located in the downtown Lincoln area near the University of Nebraska–Lincoln campus. The system was installed to provide power to operate the LED message boards that display updates on bus route time information without the use of grid electricity (off grid). This 24–volt DC system produces 896 watts (0.896 kilowatt) of power and has 400 amp–hours of battery storage. This supports the bus shelter's operations from 6am – 7pm, six days per week, and 52 weeks per year.
  • Lindsay: A 25–kilowatt solar array was installed on the Don and Mary Lee Gasper farm.
  • Lindsay: A 25–kilowatt solar–powered pivot irrigation system (100 panels) was installed on the Beller Farm near Lindsay.
  • Lyons: A 4.2–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Nebraska Renewable Energy Systems energy farm by Lyons.
  • Minatare: Thirty–six 305–watt solar panels, a total of 10.98–kilowatts, were installed on Tony Kruger's farm in Minatare.
  • Minden: A 21–kilowatt solar system was installed on a family farm near Minden.
  • Neligh: A 9–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Helen and Art Tanderup farm near Neligh.
  • Newman Grove: Gene and Rose Wissenburg own and operate a 13.2–kilowatt solar generation system. It began operation February 2019.
  • Norfolk: As of December, 2019, a Norfolk Avenue is now home to a solar array that can generate up to 25 kilowatts.
  • Norfolk: At their Norfolk Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Operations Center, the Nebraska Public Power District started generating electricity in August, 2010, from a Suncarrier solar array with a capacity of 45.6 kilowatts (147 panels). Photovoltaic energy supplies at least 7.5 percent of the facility's electricity needs. The rotating frame, which is programmed to automatically reset each day to the orientation of the rising sun, was fabricated by Behlen Manufacturing Company in Columbus, Nebraska.
  • Omaha: A 500–kilowatt rooftop solar array was installed on three campus buildings on the University of Nebraska Medical Center. The project became operational in 2019. The project will produce electricity equal to what's used annually by 60 homes. The electricity produced will be used by the campus.
  • Omaha: Creighton University has added solar installations which can generate about 120 kilowatts.
  • Omaha: In 2017, a 25–kilowatt solar photovoltaic panel array was installed at the Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium in Omaha.
  • Omaha: A 3–kilowatt PV system was installed on Eric and Kristine's house in Omaha.
  • Omaha: In 2010, an 85–kilowatt solar canopy was installed on the Cuming Street parking lot at Creighton University in partnership with the Omaha Public Power District. A second installation, a 20.5–kilowatt south–facing solar system, is atop the Kiewit Fitness Center.
  • Omaha: Located on a 13–acre tract, Omaha Public Power District’s Service Center at 5520 Lindbergh Drive boasts a 60–kilowatt array of solar panels, a 1.2–kilowatt vertical–axis wind turbine, and LED yard lighting. For its many innovative features, the Center was awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum designation. Additional sustainability features include daylight harvesting, ground loop heat exchange, operational windows, occupancy sensors, white roofing material, use of recycled materials, water saving plumbing fixtures, pervious pavement, natural ground cover, storm water retention area, storm sewer inserts to mitigate oil spill threat–and more! OPPD incorporated these sustainability features to demonstrate their applicability, a benefit for customers interested in applying them in their homes and businesses.
  • Omaha: Morrissey Engineering's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum Building installed a 27–kilowatt photovoltaic system expansion on their building in Omaha.
  • Omaha: A net–zero energy house in Omaha has a 8.6–kilowatt system that will result in net–zero energy consumption during the Omaha Public Power District's most expensive summer months of June to September.
  • Omaha: Bob and Linda Kraft's home in Omaha has a 5–kilowatt photovoltaic system.
  • Omaha: Eighteen (18) 230–watt (or 4.140–kilowatt) solar photovoltaic panels were installed on the south side of Darren and Karen's home roof in Omaha. The home also includes passive solar elements.
  • Omaha: Dsouza's residence in Omaha has a 4–kilowatt photovoltaic system.
  • Omaha: A solar hot water system was installed on a South Omaha Habitat for Humanity home in August 2014. The system is equivalent to a 3–kilowatt photovoltaic system or twelve 250–watt solar panels.
  • Papillion: Three (3) kilowatts were installed on Arnie and Marilyn's Papillion home consisting of eight south-facing panels on the side of the house and four on the roof. The system offsets the home’s power use during the day and charges a plug-in Chevrolet Volt every night, which is then driven on battery for pennies a mile.
  • Ralston: An 8.16–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed in September 2012 on Cynthia and John's home in Ralston, with panels oriented to the west and south. There are 34 micro inverters.
  • Ravenna: Ravenna's solar and wind hybrid installation at their public school combines a 1.7–kilowatt wind turbine with a ground–mounted solar array.
  • Schuyler: Renewable Solar LLC installed a solar network at Midland Feeders' new poultry barns north of Schuyler in Colfax County. The 300–kilowatt system has the potential to produce enough elecricity, using solar energy, to compensate for all of the potential electrical needs of the poultry barns (a 100–percent offset).
  • Schuyler: A 3–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Dan Blum's residence in Schuyler.
  • Scottsbluff: Nebraska Public Power District built a solar energy pilot project at their Scottsbluff offices that went online in 2017. The 128–kilowatt community solar project will provide enough electricity for about 20 homes.
  • Venango: A 96–kilowatt community solar project went online in 2017 in Venango in Perkins County.
  • Winnebago: A 23.5–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed in April 2015 on the Tribal Police & Fire Department Building in the Village of Winnebago in Northeast Nebraska.
  • Winnebago Reservation: The Ho–Chunk Village Solar Development installed 1,000 solar panels at 13 sites across the Winnebago Reservation that will generate 400 kilowatts of solar power.

Operational Projects With No Details on Location

  • Lincoln: Three yet–to–be announced Lincoln businesses have banded together on an array capable of generating nearly 300 kilowatts.
  • A 7.8–kilowatt array was installed on the Dageforde net–zero energy home.
  • A 8.2–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on John and Cynthia Tiedeman's residence in the fall of 2014.
  • A 5–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Meyer's acreage.
  • An 8–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on Steve and Ardis Holland's garage/shop building.
  • A 7.8–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Niemeyer Residence.
  • A 6–kilowatt photovoltaic system was installed on the Mathew's acreage.

Operational Projects With No Details on Capacity

For more information, see Units and Capacity (Pages 64–68) .

Note: Private solar projects operating under Nebraska's net–metering statutes are included in the totals in Nebraska's Net Metering Reports. Although projects are not individually listed to provide the power source, the majority of net–metering projects could be assumed to be solar.

Source: Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy, Lincoln, NE.

Note: Organizations, groups, companies, fuels, or individuals in the agency’s pages are for information only and are not an endorsement by the State of Nebraska or the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy and its management or staff.

This report was updated on October 7, 2020.
Typically, there is one year between updates.