New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced awards for 22 large-scale solar and energy storage projects to be constructed across the state, which together will add more than 2 GW of clean energy and roughly 160 MW of storage to the state’s grid.
The initiative is being touted as the state’s largest land-based renewable energy procurement to date. Construction and development of the portfolio is expected to create over 3,000 short- and long-term jobs across the state, more than $2.7 billion in private investment, and raise the state’s renewable energy total in its overall energy mix to around 66%. The project awards were divided by region across six regions: the Capital Region, Central New York, Mohawk Valley, North Country, Southern Tier, and Western New York. While it has not yet been decided what the duration of the storage projects will be, utility-scale installation in the region often use four-hour duration, meaning we will likely see 640 MWh of storage added to the grid.
Capital Region projects
- Stern Solar LLC, a CS Energy affiliate, will build a 20 MW solar facility in the town of Schaghticoke, Rensselaer County.
- Fort Edward Solar LLC, a Boralex affiliate, will build a 100 MW solar facility in the towns of Fort Edward and Argyle, Washington County.
- Scotch Ridge Solar LLC, a Nexamp affiliate, will build a 20 MW solar facility in the town of Duanesburg, Schenectady County.
- ELP Stuyvesant Solar LLC, an East Light Partners affiliate, will build a 20 MW solar facility in the town of Stuyvesant, Columbia County.
- Easton Solar LLC, a Boralex affiliate, will build a 20 MW solar facility in the town of Easton, Washington County.
- ELP Rotterdam Solar LLC, an East Light Partners affiliate, will build a 20 MW solar facility in the town of Rotterdam, Schenectady County.
Central New York projects
- ConnectGen Cayuga County LLC, a ConnectGen affiliate, will build a 100 MW solar facility in the towns of Genoa and Venice, Cayuga County.
- SED NY Holdings LLC, a SunEast Development affiliate, will build an 18 MW solar facility in the town of Scipio, Cayuga County.
Mohawk Valley projects
- ConnectGen Montgomery County LLC, a ConnectGen affiliate, will build a 100 MW solar facility in the town of Glen, Montgomery County.
- SunEast Flat Creek Solar LLC, a SunEast Development affiliate, will build a 100 MW solar facility in the town of Root, Montgomery County.
- Newport Deerfield Solar LLC, a Boralex affiliate, will build a 130 MW solar facility in the towns of Deerfield, Marcy and Newport, Oneida and Herkimer County.
- Foothills Solar LLC, a Boralex affiliate, will build a 40 MW solar facility in the town of Mayfield, Fulton County.
- Columbia Solar Energy Center LLC, an EDF Renewables affiliate, will build a 350 MW solar facility with 20 MW of co-located energy storage in the towns of Columbia and Litchfield, Herkimer County.
North Country projects
- Rich Road Solar Energy Center LLC, an EDF Renewables affiliate, will build a 240 MW solar facility with 20 MW of co-located Storage in the town of Canton, St. Lawrence County.
- Fort Covington Solar LLC, a Boralex affiliate, will build a 250 MW solar facility with 77 MW of co-located Storage in the town of Fort Covington, Franklin County.
- ReneSola Power Holdings LLC, a ReneSola Power affiliate, will build a 120 MW solar facility with 2 MW of co-located Storage in the town of Massena, St. Lawrence County.
- Moss Ridge Solar 1 LLC, a Borrego Solar affiliate, will build a 60 MW solar facility in the town of Dekalb, St. Lawrence County.
Southern Tier project
- Yellow Barn Solar LLC, a CS Energy affiliate, will build a 160 MW solar facility in the towns of Lansing and Groton, Tompkins County.
Western New York projects
- Ridge View Solar Energy Center, LLC, an EDF Renewables affiliate, will build a 350 MW solar facility with 20 MW of co-located Storage in the town of Hartland, Niagara County.
- Bear Ridge Solar LLC, a Cypress Creek Renewables affiliate, will build a 100 MW solar facility in the town of Cambria and Pendleton, Niagara County.
- Alfred Oaks Solar LLC, a Northland Power affiliate, will build a 100 MW solar facility with 20 MW of co-located Storage in the town of Alfred, Allegany County.
- York Run Solar LLC, a CS Energy affiliate, will build a 90 MW solar facility in the towns of Busti and Kiantone, Chautauqua County.
Particularly of note are the Columbia Solar, Rich Road, Fort Covington, Yellow Barn, and Ridge View projects, all of which are over 150 MW in capacity, a bit of a rarity for New York. While some utility-scale capacity has been built, especially in more recent history, the majority of capacity that has achieved operation within the state has come from residential solar and community solar projects, where New York is the nation’s leader.
In March, New York achieved the milestone of having more than 1 GW of community solar installed and operational, the only state in the country to achieve the feat. Much of the community solar developed in the state has received benefits from the state’s NY-Sun program, a state solar incentive program for distributed generation assets. Since being launched in 2011, NY-Sun has put forth more than $1.8 billion to advance the scale-up of solar and move the State closer to having a sustainable, self-sufficient solar industry.
The Columbia and Ridge View projects are especially noteworthy, as the two are among the largest projects ever approved in New York. Both edge out the recently-approved Excelsior Energy Center, a 280 MW solar energy farm on 3,443 acres in the town of Byron, just west of Rochester. The true behemoth, however, is Hecate Energy’s $500 million, 500 MW Cider Solar Farm in the towns of Elba and Oakfield, southwest of Rochester, which received approval in April.
Additional economic impact
In developing the 22 listed projects, developers have committed nearly $86 million in investments in disadvantaged communities throughout the state, including community-based investments such as new occupational apprenticeships, scholarship programs, and summer camps focused on supporting local disadvantaged communities. Additionally, all developers have committed to ensuring that workers associated with the construction of projects are paid a prevailing wage, a standard set by the NYS Department of Labor.
The average statewide bill impact for the typical residential customer will be approximately $0.13 per month once the projects are in operation, with all 22 projects having a weighted-average all-in development cost of $63.08 per MWh.
“With the largest portfolio of projects awarded to date, New York is strengthening an already massive renewable energy pipeline that is positioned to deliver increasing amounts of clean and affordable electricity to thousands of families across the state for years to come,” said President and CEO of NYSERDA and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Doreen M. Harris. “NYSERDA is committed to working with the awarded developers, local host governments and community stakeholders throughout the project development process to responsibly site projects, including the protection of prime agricultural land, and ensure that they cross the finish line on time.”
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