NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, through an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary, and Tompkins Cortland Community College (TC3), one of 64-member institutions of the State University of New York system, announced the completion of a 2.6 MW solar system on the main college campus in Dryden, New York. The system, installed on approximately 10 acres, is expected to meet 90 percent of the college's electricity needs.
"We're proud to support TC3's goals to be more energy efficient and to save money that can be applied to programs for students," said Matt Handel, vice president of development for NextEra Energy Resources. "By putting a piece of their underutilized land to work generating clean solar energy, TC3 will receive competitively priced electricity at no up-front cost."
The ground-mounted fixed-array system is composed of 8,676 solar modules. TC3 will purchase the electricity from the solar project over the term of a 25-year power purchase agreement. The project, which is owned and operated by a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, began generating electricity in May 2015. TC3 projections anticipate first-year savings of approximately $30,000, with potential further savings through the years if traditional utility rates increase.
"We're happy to be able to meet such a large percentage of our energy needs through this solar project," said James Turner, director of facilities for TC3. "As a college we are committed to doing what we can to help the environment, both by our teaching and by our actions. This project, along with other energy-saving and environment-improving efforts already underway on campus, is a significant step both for the college and the entire community."
Support for this project came from Governor Cuomo's NY-Sun initiative, which is administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). NY-Sun is a $1 billion initiative to advance the scale-up of solar and move the state closer to having a sustainable, self-sufficient solar industry.