US Light Energy, a leading New York solar energy company specializing in the development of solar electric and community solar systems, was joined by local, state and federal representatives, clean energy advocates and providers, and project partners at a groundbreaking event in Clifton Park, New York to officially launch construction of its latest community solar initiative.
The Sugar Hill Solar Farm, to be located on 40 acres of land on the Sugar-Hill / Sugar-View Farm on Sugar Hill Road, will be the first community solar farm developed in Clifton Park. The 7-megawatt (MW), ground-mounted solar project will encompass nearly 20,000 solar modules. When fully operational later this year, it is expected to produce more than 8.6 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of clean energy annually – enough electricity to power up to 600 homes and businesses.
As a participant in New York state’s Community Solar Program, electricity generated at Sugar Hill Solar Farm can be supplied to customers anywhere in National Grid’s existing distribution system, without the need for rooftop solar panels. Subscribers typically save 10 percent on their electricity bills. Residential and commercial properties in Clifton Park will have 30 days to subscribe before the solar energy generated by the farm is opened to the general public.
“We are thrilled to begin construction of Clifton Park’s first community solar farm, which will produce clean, renewable energy that saves money for customers and reduces our carbon footprint,” said Mark Richardson, President and CEO of US Light Energy. “With the support of leaders in town government, elected representatives on the state and federal levels, and our partners in energy delivery and advocacy, we look forward to harnessing the power of the sun to positively impact our energy, economic and environmental futures.”
“This project is the perfect first step in building our New York portfolio of community solar projects,” said Scott Wiater, President and CEO of Standard Solar, which will own and operate the community solar farm. “We believe community solar is the future of the industry, and US Light Energy is leading the way in developing innovative projects. We congratulate them and the state of New York on this momentous occasion.”
“We’re excited to partner with USLE to help homeowners, renters and businesses in the Clifton Park area save on their energy costs and lower emissions,” said Richard Keiser, Founder and CEO of Common Energy, US Light Energy’s customer acquisition partner. “By supporting these projects, the entire community benefits.”
Chosen for its secluded location and proximity to electrical infrastructure, the site of the Sugar Hill Solar Farm is particularly advantageous to the project. The presence of the solar farm will enable a previously underutilized property to become a new source of landowner revenue, while also preserving it from the impacts of residential and commercial development.
The project received over $1.6 million in funding from Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s NY-Sun initiative, which is administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). NY-Sun is a $1 billion initiative to advance the scale up of solar and move the state closer to having a sustainable, self-sufficient solar industry. Since 2011, solar in New York state has increased more than 1,500 percent and leveraged nearly $3.5 billion in private investments.
“The Sugar Hill Solar Farm initiative by U.S. Light Energy will provide clean energy that will help Clifton Park residents save money on their electric bills and help preserve farm land in town. It's a win for the environment, ratepayers and our small businesses," said Senator Jim Tedisco (R, C, I, REF-Glenville).
“I am very pleased to welcome US Light Energy to the Town of Clifton Park and the 112th Assembly District,” said Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh (R, C, I-Ballston). “The Capital Region is leading the way in our commitment to creating clean, renewable energy opportunities; I commend community leaders for seeing the value in approving this solar project, and I thank US Light Energy for their substantial investment.”
Alicia Barton, President and CEO, NYSERDA said, “All across New York, residents and businesses continue to seek new ways to gain greater access to clean energy solutions like solar that deliver meaningful economic and environmental benefits. Congratulations to U.S. Light Energy as they break ground on their community solar project which will help Clifton Park transition to clean sustainable energy and advance Governor Cuomo’s nation-leading clean energy goals to fight climate change.”
“National Grid looks forward to working together in the development of this project and getting interconnected to our distribution system,” said Michael Pilawa, Manager of the Central Division, National Grid.
“The presence of reliable energy capabilities, and in particular those that are renewable, is a critical component of economic development,” said Marty Vanags, President of the Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership. “We congratulate US Light Energy on reaching this milestone, and look forward to working with them to leverage this resource to attract additional economic growth to Saratoga County.”
US Light Energy | http://www.uslightenergy.com
Standard Solar | http://www.standardsolar.com
Common Energy | http://www.commonenergy.us