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Tuesday, July 05, 2022

The first Alachua County Government large-scale solar panel project was unveiled Tuesday.

There are now 128 solar panels at the Leveda Brown Environmental Park, said Ron Bishop, Alachua County solid waste engineer.

The energy provided by the panels will be sold to Gainesville Regional Utilities for 32 cents a kilowatt-hour under the new feed-in tariff bill that was implemented March 1.

"By the end of the year, Gainesville will have produced twice as much energy as the entire state," he said.

Bishop said that the park expects the panels to produce enough energy to power three or four houses per day.

Bishop said he started thinking about ways to use alternative energy more than 25 years ago, but because it was too expensive he didn't begin thinking realistically about it until four years ago.

"Sunlight is free," he said. "It's delivered to your door without any shipping and handling fees."

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