One of the dirtiest pieces of land in the U.S., Sullivan’s Ledge, in New Bedford, Mass., is now remediated and generating solar power. That’s thanks to a 1.8 megawatt PV array installed by SunEdison and Blue Wave Capital.
The project was unveiled today at a proceeding presided by EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. The project was developed on approximately 10 remediated acres of the Sullivan’s Ledge landfill, a former Superfund site, which is owned by the city of New Bedford. The new array will help New Bedford meet its goal of sourcing 60 percent of its electric needs from solar energy. The city will also purchase the net metering credits generated from the system.
“Projects like Sullivan Ledge demonstrate the opportunities that can be achieved through solar,” said Steve Raeder, SunEdison’s managing director of sales. “Working on a Superfund site can be challenging, but together with BlueWave Capital we successfully transformed a site that was once used to dispose of hazardous materials into a model solar project that will provide energy savings to the City of New Bedford for years to come.”
This is the second of three solar projects that SunEdison and Blue Wave Capital have partnered on for New Bedford. “Sullivan’s Ledge marks the latest chapter in the New Bedford solar success story,” said John DeVillars, the managing principal of BlueWave Capital and the former regional administrator for the Environmental Protection Agency.
Under the agreement signed with SunEdison, New Bedford will purchase the net-metering credits generated by the system for 20 years. SunEdison said the energy from the array will significantly reduce New Bedford’s electric costs, with $76,000 in savings expected annually and $1.8 million dollars in savings anticipated over the agreement period.
“Not only does the new system reduce energy costs, it also deepens community awareness of the many solar opportunities available,” said New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell.
Former landfills are ideal site for solar arrays, even if they’ve just been capped instead of remediated. They are generally pieces of land with little to no agricultural value and or residential value because of the former use of the land. However, they often are large, open spaces with little tall vegetation to move with hills that can be oriented to the sun’s rays, making them ideal for solar installations.Tweet