Kearsarge Energy announced May 5 the operation of the largest Massachusetts operating SREC II Solar PV Project, the 4.9-MW (dc) ground-mounted Kearsarge Southwick facility.
The project, located in Southwick, Massachusetts, is the 13th solar project developed by Kearsarge Energy, representing a total of 37 MW. The occasion was marked by a brief ribbon cutting ceremony held at the site and attended by Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Town of West Springfield Mayor Ed Sullivan, state Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Judith Judson, Rep. Nicolas A. Boldyga (R-Southwick), Nico Helems from the Office of state Sen. Donald F. Humason, Jr. (R-Westfield), local and state officials, project stakeholders and friends and family.
Kearsarge Southwick, consisting of 16,416 300-Watt PV modules on approximately 20 acres, will generate enough electricity over 20 years to offset more than 80,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions and to power 600 homes annually. Kearsarge Southwick is part of the rapidly growing solar industry in Massachusetts which accounts for nearly 12,000 jobs and is forecast to grow 18 percent over the next year.
All power from the facility will be purchased by West Springfield through a virtually net metered Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), saving the town up to $4 million over the life of the project.
“Kearsarge is pleased to have completed our latest solar project with significant benefits to all public and private stakeholders: the host municipality, Southwick, with new tax revenue; West Springfield, with substantial energy cost savings; the landowner, through a long term lease; our Massachusetts-based construction partner, Innovative Engineering Solutions, Inc.; and the Commonwealth, providing cleaner energy and local jobs. Building on successful relationships such as these, Kearsarge is poised to double its solar portfolio by the end of 2015,” said Andrew Bernstein, Managing Partner of Kearsarge Energy.
“This project is a great example of how harnessing solar power can protect the environment, save on energy costs, and create jobs,” said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Judith Judson. “Projects like this one in Southwick play a key role in reaching the Baker-Polito Administration’s solar goal of 1600 megawatts by 2020.”
Kearsarge Energy, based in Watertown, Mass., is a leading renewable energy project development, finance, and asset management company. Founded in 2009, Kearsarge is focused on creating long-term economic and environmental value by working closely with local communities to meet the growing demand for reliable and cost-effective commercial- and utility-scale renewable energy projects. Kearsarge has developed and financed more than 40 MW and $120 million of solar photovoltaic projects in Massachusetts and Hawaii, and has an additional 150 MW of solar and wind currently in development in select markets across the U.S. and Mexico.