Danville Solar installation built on a former General Motors site in Illinois


A former brownfield turns green with the completion of the Danville solar system, announced by Ameresco, Inc.,  a cleantech integrator, and Inovateus Solar, a solar engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) company. The project was built on a former General Motors Powertrain Division Plant turned brownfield site. Greenbacker Renewable Energy Company, an independent power producer and green energy investment company, is the owner of the installation.

The 2.62 MW system consists of over 6,600 solar modules and is connected to the Ameren utility grid. The completed project is expected to generate over 3,600,000 kWh of electricity and offset over 1,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, or the equivalent to powering 350 Illinois homes and removing approximately 480 cars from the road.

“We can turn a serious problem into a tremendous opportunity by siting solar on closed landfills,” said Tyler Kanczuzewski, vice president of sustainability at Inovateus. “The Danville Solar project is making productive use of land that might otherwise lie dormant, while avoiding construction in more pristine areas. We’re proud to partner with Ameresco on this project and to help the state of Illinois achieve its clean energy goals.”

This project contributes to Illinois’ Future Energy Jobs Act, which requires that 2,700 MW of solar to be installed in Illinois by 2030 and that 2% of those projects come from brownfield sites. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, Illinois has a strong and growing solar market due in part to its renewable portfolio standard that requires that 25% of its energy comes from renewable sources by 2025. The amount of solar capacity installed in Illinois, currently at 1.5 GW, is expected to grow by more than 1,700% over the next five years. Illinois ranks 17th in the country for installed solar.

“We’re proud to have been a partner on this project designed to help meet sustainability goals and offer clean, resilient energy to the surrounding community,” said Louis P. Maltezos, executive vice president, Ameresco. “This installation is a prime example of using innovative cleantech solutions to identify clean energy uses for public land.”

 The Danville solar project began construction in November of 2020 and reached completion in May of 2022.

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