The solar canopy will have capacity to generate 1.038 megawatts of electricity – enough to power 158 average-sized homes. It will be the second-largest solar carport in the Midwest, after a 1.1-megawatt facility at the Cincinnati Zoo in Ohio, and it will reduce the amount of electricity Ford pulls from the grid to run its offices. http://www.pvbuzz.com/press-releases/ford-motor-company-teams-dte-energy-build-michigans-largest-solar-array/
The take away: Utilities are able to meet their renewable energy requirements by installing solar power arrays at high power demand commercial locations with available space, generating electricity at the point of use.
Theses project become more attractive to commercial power customers because their supply is generated closer to the facility, it improves their corporate responsibility image, and its free. In this case Ford is also able to implement power charging for their own brand of electric vehicle, the Fusion Energi and C-MAX Hybrid Energ. Could Ford and DTE Energy tie this into a retail venture as Toyota, Honda and Tesla plan to do?
29 Aug 2014 – Here’s an update by the Wall Street Journal – http://online.wsj.com/articles/u-s-utilities-push-the-electric-car-1409336042?mod=WSJ_hp_RightTopStories