A large Midwestern university saved millions by utilizing the Usource RFP process. Their new solar system will provide over 10% of the university’s annual electricity use and help the university achieve its long-term commitment to becoming a carbon neutral campus.

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For well over a decade, Usource has been the trusted energy advisor to a large Midwestern University. With sustainability becoming a larger priority, the University worked with Usource to procure renewable energy credits (RECs) and analyze and contract on hydroelectric Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). 


When approached with a unique opportunity to contract with a solar project located close to the main campus, the University was uncertain whether this would be the most cost-efficient solution, if it would offset enough of their current electricity usage and if it would enable the University to meet its sustainability goals. The University shared their concerns with Usource and asked for help in evaluating the feasibility and benefits of the proposed project.


Usource leveraged its proprietary analytics platform to employ strategic insight into the sustainability and economic objectives of adding a solar resource into the University’s electricity procurement portfolio. Working alongside the University’s team, Usource identified the key criteria for evaluation which included geographic considerations, environmental additionality, contract terms, electricity volumes and price tradeoffs, and the technological options for receiving the solar energy. In the University’s area, both the state and the ISO rules for renewable energy were in the process of changing, so correctly interpreting the impacts of these changes on the value of capacity and the environmental attributes from the project was critical.

With the key criteria determined, Usource utilized its Request for Proposal (RFP) bid platform to obtain proposals from a number of solar developers. Upon receiving proposals, Usource worked with several developers to clarify, refine and evaluate the bids based on the project criteria and collaborated with the University to help make the ideal selection. With a developer selected, Usource then provided insights into the critical areas to be addressed in the PPA in order to position the University to meet its objectives and manage risks.



By using the Usource RFP process, the University will save $8,394,000 over the 20-year period, versus the original proposal. The system will provide over 10% of the University’s annual electricity use. Along with the project, the University is positioned to have roughly 40% of its current annual electricity needs met by local renewable power sources. As its trusted energy advisor, Usource continues to work with the University to reduce energy costs and achieve its long-term commitment to becoming a carbon neutral campus.


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total savings through Usource RFP process
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of annual electricity use provided by solar system
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of annual electricity needs met by local renewable power sources (solar & hydro)
Solar panels on green land

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By working with Usource to procure solar energy through an RFP process, a large Midwestern university saved $8.39 million over 20 years and will receive over 10% of its annual electricity from solar power, helping it achieve its sustainability goals.

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