NRG Energy's renewables business’ newest community solar facility in Massachusetts has come online in the town of Spencer to serve the electricity needs of more than 1,500 residential and commercial subscribers in the Commonwealth.
The commissioning of NRG’s largest community solar facility in the United States reflects the company’s growing business in Massachusetts and other states in the Northeast. In addition to residential rooftop and community solar power offerings, NRG offers Massachusetts residents and business owners retail electric choice when determining how they will power their homes and businesses.
The Spencer community solar farm — situated on 200 acres of the historic St. Joseph’s Abbey — is 100 percent subscribed and has a rated capacity of 14.7 MW (AC) comprised of more than 61,000 solar photovoltaic panels. The new facility, which is NRG’s third operating community solar farm in Massachusetts, demonstrates the company’s increasing commitment to community solar that provides affordable, locally-produced energy solutions without installing equipment on a customer’s property.
“This is NRG’s largest community solar project in the United States,” said Drew Warshaw, Vice President of Community Solar, NRG. “It represents an opportunity for a diverse mix of residential and commercial customers to support clean energy and receive long-term savings on their electricity bill all without putting solar panels on their roof.”
Subscribers to the Spencer facility entered into a 20-year agreement with NRG Community Solar and, in exchange for a fixed monthly payment, earn credits toward their electricity bill based on their allocation of renewable energy net metering credits generated by the project.
“We welcome the opportunity to be part of this important and sustainable project for renewable energy resources for Massachusetts,” said John Stevens, Chairman of the Spencer Board of Selectmen. “Generating electricity from renewable energy offers significant public benefits, energy price stability and health dividends.”
Matthew Beaton, Massachusetts Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary added: “The Commonwealth is a national leader in solar energy, harnessing the full potential of clean energy innovations to reduce costs and carbon emissions. The Baker-Polito Administration is committed to working with our municipal partners across Massachusetts to expand community solar projects, saving ratepayers and taxpayers thousands of dollars annually that can be reinvested into the community.”
The project – which created 150 jobs during its nearly year-long construction – represents one of many community solar projects NRG has in the pipeline in Massachusetts and Minnesota.
“Thank you to NRG for the project support they afforded to St. Joseph’s Abbey during the construction process,” said State Representative Donald Berthiaume, Jr. “Spencer is blessed to have partners like the Abbey who support projects that benefit our community as a whole.”
State Senator Anne Gobi added: “This project is an example of meeting the renewable energy goals that the Commonwealth has adopted. In addition, it helps the Trappists and their mission to be self-sustaining.”