Delanco solar farm to supply Burlington, Camden, Mercer clean energy
DELANCO – According to official data, a new solar farm in the community will provide clean energy to more than 700 residents in Burlington, Camden and Mercer counties.
The solar farm opened on Thursday morning with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 900 Coopertown Road. Soltage, the project developer, hosted the event along with local officials such as Senator Troy Singleton.
The Delanco site is “one of the first solar projects in New Jersey” according to a registration website for the energy service. It is part of the Community Solar Energy Pilot program, run by the State Board of Public Utilities, which “enables access to solar energy through a subscription-based model that allows residents to connect to a solar array in their utility’s utility area.” “According to a BPU press release in April.
According to CEO Jesse Grossman, Soltage also built the farm on an old landfill, the first such project in the Garden State.
Zac Meyer, the company’s development manager, said 51 percent of the subscription slots are reserved for low- and middle-income residents under an agreement with the BPU.
Low- and middle-income subscribers can save 20 percent per month on their utility bills, or about $ 120 a year, according to Soltage representatives. Higher income subscribers can save 10 percent per month.
“Anytime we can turn brown fields into community goods, we’ve done something good,” Singleton said. “This enables our communities to get the energy they need.”
The farm uses solar panels to connect the sunlight to the electricity grid.
According to Meyer, Soltage, a Jersey City-based renewable energy producer, built this Delanco site for a million dollar value. The company then partnered with Neighborhood Sun, a Maryland-based company that is recruiting subscribers to community solar projects to convince local residents to sign up.
It wasn’t a heavy sale, according to Sherry Robinson, sales director for Neighborhood Sun. Almost 600 households signed up ahead of the ceremony on Thursday.
“Clean energy provides a healthy environment for everyone,” said Robinson. “And Community Solar makes it available to everyone instead of the few who can afford solar on the roof.”
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With more than 100 spots left, officials are encouraging residents to apply.
It doesn’t matter what city, Burlington, Camden and Mercer, or what type of home you live in, Robinson said. Register at the following link: https://ns.solarforall.io/signup.cfm?project_id=14.
Officials also hope that this model, which re-uses old land and combines clean energy with justice, will become a new standard in the state. The BPU is currently examining more than 400 applications for municipal solar projects.
“This project perfectly shows the impact of clean energy on a local level,” said Grossman.
Jarrad Daniel Saffren has been a local news and sports reporter in Pennsylvania and New Jersey since 2015 and joined the Burlington County Times’ award-winning local news team in October 2019. Contact him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JarradSaff. Please support local journalism with a subscription to the Burlington County Times.