New England’s largest solar farm is now online

A 76.5 megawatt solar farm in Farmington, Maine, the largest in New England to date, is now online.

Energy company NextEra, headquartered in Juno Beach, Florida, financed and developed the $ 110 million solar farm. Farmington Solar LLC is a subsidiary of NextEra.

The 300,000 panel solar farm is located on 500 acres of leased land on Route 2 in the town of Farmington. The land belongs to a dairy farmer who, according to Farmington Solar, “has lost his milk buyer and has had to downsize his herd significantly. By leasing his land to the Farmington Solar Project [the farmer] will be able to make up a large part of this lost income and bring his family into a significantly improved financial situation. “

The project will earn the city approximately $ 20 million in taxes over the 30-year agreement. The panels are said to last between 25 and 40 years.

Video: Russ Dillingham / Sun Journal

The New England College Renewable Partnership (NECRP) – Smith, Amherst, Williams, Hampshire, Bowdoin – and New England utilities buy the electricity that equates to about 17,000 households with electricity. Maine is part of the New England Network. The NECRP states:

This agreement marks the very first example of a New England Higher Education collaborative purchase of solar energy and one of the first such collaborations in the United States.

Among other things, the NECRP says that Farmington’s electricity purchase brings each of the five campuses closer to its climate goals, helps every school manage costs by “fixing” the price of electricity for the next 20 years, and provides educational opportunities for college students.

All five colleges aim to reach net zero by 2030.

Continue reading: The governor of Maine permanently bans offshore wind in state waters

Photo: Bowdoin College

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