Dane County recognized for national solar energy leadership – WKOW

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DANE COUNTY (WKOW) — Dane County is receiving recognition for its work to encourage and grow solar energy at the local level.

SolSmart awarded Dane County with a Platinum designation, making it the first county in the nation to receive that level of designation. SolSmart is a national program that works with local municipalities to enhance solar energy use and projects. There are also Gold, Silver, and Bronze designations. 

“Dane County is delighted to be recognized as SolSmart Platinum. This designation reflects our strong commitment to expanding everyone’s access to clean energy and I am hopeful our achievement will inspire more municipalities and counties to pursue SolSmart designations,” said County Executive Joe Parisi.

To be a Platinum designee, according to a press release from the county, the county needs to demonstrate exceptional achievements in building a solar-friendly community based on national best practices.

The designation is a result of a collaboration between the county and multiple municipalities, including McFarland, Mount Horeb, Middleton, and Sun Prairie. Staff in those municipalities worked with the county’s Office of Energy and Climate Change andt he Capital Area Regional Planning Commission to implement new initiatives that helped simplify the process of installing solar arrays.

The county also has to post metrics on the quantity of solar installed in the county. You can take a look at where those installations are located here.

Dane County became the first county in Wisconsin to achieve 100% renewable offset electricity in 2023.

Since the SolSmart program launched in 2016, hundreds of towns, cities, counties, and reigional organizations have achieved SolSmart designations.

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