The Vermont Public Service Board plans a Jan. 11 public hearing on an application by SolarCity Corp. for approval of a solar project.
Jeremy Sande, the Permitting Manager within SolarCity’s Environmental Permitting and Civil Engineering Department, provided opening testimony in this case covering the Lamoille River Solar Project.
The nameplate capacity of the project will be 4.9 MW (ac). It would use approximately 23,560 (+/-) solar panels. The final number and rating of the solar panels will depend upon SolarCity’s selection of a panel manufacturer and solar installer after all permitting is complete. The expected net energy output of the project (after DC to AC conversion) will be approximately 9,916 (+/-) megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity per year.
The project will occupy approximately 38 (+/-) acres of a 40 (+/-) acre solar lease area that will be leased from a 132-acre tract of land within the Town of Milton. SolarCity has obtained site control over the 40 acres and the access road via lease and easement agreements. The Property is an undeveloped parcel within an agricultural field located at 81 West Milton Road (44° 37′ 47.6″ N, 73° 9′ 31.7″ W).
Sande noted that the project is being developed through a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Green Mountain Power (GMP) resulting from GMP’s 2015 Request For Proposal (RFP). This contract provides for the sale of the project’s output and other attributes, including renewable energy credits, to GMP at a fixed price for 25 years. At the end of that period, SolarCity will assess whether: it is financially viable to continue to operate the project as is; or any changes could be made to the project to allow its continued operation, and an appropriate amendment to its Certificate of Public Good would be sought; or the project should be decommissioned.