OYA Renewables, a New York-based solar developer, announced that two new community solar projects with 13 MW of power capacity have been selected as part of the first round of the Expanded Solar For All (E-SFA) program, a community solar program for underserved New Yorkers.
The awarded solar projects, OYA Ellisburg (6.5 MW, Jefferson County) and OYA Main Street (6.5 MW, Livingston County), will be fully subscribed with National Grid customers enrolled in the utility’s Energy Affordability Program, located in western New York. Governed by the New York Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), in partnership with National Grid, the underserved community solar program will deliver clean energy to nearly 175,000 income-eligible customers in upstate New York once complete.
“Expanded Solar For All is a program we’re excited and very proud to be a part of,” said Manish Nayar, chairman and founder of OYA Renewables. “Its progressive approach to delivering clean energy to underserved communities is smart and commendable, and we applaud the State of New York for continuing to lead innovative programs that support its constituents.”
OYA has received more than $4.3 million in support from NYSERDA through the state’s NY-Sun program, which is helping make solar more accessible to families, businesses and communities across the state.
“New York’s Expanded Solar For All program helps underserved New Yorkers save on their monthly electricity bill and become a part of the clean energy transition,” said Doreen Harris, president and chief executive officer of NYSERDA. “We are excited to partner with OYA and National Grid on these community solar projects that will extend the benefits of solar to more homeowners and renters across the state.”
OYA Renewables has more than 1.44 GW of solar currently deployed in the community solar and utility markets, generating enough electricity to power 720,000 homes on an annual basis. The company has a 9 GW project development pipeline of projects within the solar, EV charging and other clean technologies in 14 US states.
Last week New York’s grid operator NYISO completed final interconnection studies for 27 renewable energy and transmission projects for which the developers have agreed to interconnection costs.
The projects include 1.6 GW of solar and 1.5 GW of storage, which compares to 16 GW of solar and 14 GW of storage in NYISO’s interconnection queue studies at year-end 2021, according to data from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
The projects also include 2.3 GW of offshore wind and 0.8 GW of onshore wind, compared to 37 GW of offshore wind and 4 GW of onshore wind in the NYISO queue at year-end 2021.
Also approved was the 339-mile, 1.25 GW high voltage direct current (HVDC) line, the Champlain Hudson Power Express, for which construction began in November 2022.
The total interconnection cost for all approved projects is about $600 million, including about $200 million to interconnect the transmission project.
The approved projects “will help move the state closer to the clean energy mandates” of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, said Zach Smith, NYISO’s vice president of system and resource planning. Under that law, New York has an interim goal of reducing climate pollution 40% by 2030, compared to the 1990 level.
NYISO has made available a list of the 27 projects that are advancing.
NYISO reviews requests to interconnect to the transmission grid using a “cluster study” process, which NYISO calls a “class year” process, as described in “The NYISO Interconnection Process.” In reporting on the 27 projects, NYISO said the “decision/settlement process for Class Year 2021” has been completed.
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