Auto junk yard now a 2.1 MW solar site


Door panels, tire rims, headlights, and solar. Maybe not the typical find at your favorite junk yard. But Encore Renewable Energy and the Vermont Public Power Supply Authority (VPPSA) just commissioned a 2.1 MW community solar project sited on top of a former auto salvage yard.

The project is estimated to produce 3.2 million kWh a year, enough to power about 325 homes annually. The array is part of a larger 10 MW development planned between the two on behalf of VPPSA’s municipal utility members.

All generation from the Salvage Yard solar project will be sold to Vermont electric utilities that are not already 100% renewably-powered. Under the public-private partnership, Encore performs design, development, financing, and construction, while VPPSA manages the electric generation and maximizes value for its member utilities’ communities.

(Read: “Solar in uncommon spaces.”)

The salvage yard landowners will remain on the land that has been in their family for generations. The solar system offers both an annual lease payment and the means to complete required environmental remediation work. 

The ground beneath the solar array is planted with pollinator-friendly ground cover, which the project sponsors said supports local biodiversity, reduces storm water runoff, and improves soil quality.

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