Kearsarge brings online US$130m worth of solar and storage projects in New England

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A solar project from Kearsarge atop a landfill site. Image: Kearsarge Energy.

US renewables developer and asset owner Kearsarge Energy has commissioned US$130 million of solar and energy storage plants across Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

Consisting of 11 individual projects with a combined capacity of 34MW, the portfolio will be owned and operated by Kearsarge for the long term.

The developments include a landfill in the city of Haverhill that has been transformed under the Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) programme to include 2.8MWac of PV generation paired with 2MWac of battery storage on 12 acres of under utilised land.

Another installation in Tiverton, Rhode Island, features a PV project with a capacity of almost 3MWdc that was designed to provide a habitat for local wildlife and to accommodate a herd of sheep and pollinators.

With the 11 plants now operational, Kearsarge Energy managing partner Andrew Bernstein said the company is looking to develop and construct 250MW of projects over 2021-2022 and expand into Maine, New Hampshire, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland. 

Under Massachusetts’ SMART programme, solar projects owners in the state receive fixed rate payments for the solar energy they produce based on the kilowatt-hours of power produced. The state last year doubled its solar target under the initiative from 1.6GW to 3.2GW.

With Massachusetts committed to reaching net zero emissions by 2050, the state’s governor earlier this year signed legislation that mandates more renewable resources for utilities and relaxes the net metering thresholds for solar PV.

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