New Solar Farm Is A ‘Win-Win’ For Maine Utility

IGS Solar has completed a 4.6 MW-AC solar project at the Madison Business Gateway in Madison, Maine.

Madison Electric Works (MEW), a municipality-owned utility serving about 2,500 customers in Madison and three neighboring towns, teamed up with IGS Solar in an effort to help the utility integrate solar energy while helping to better control long-term energy costs for ratepayers. IGS Solar financed and will own and operate the system, and MEW will buy 100% of the project’s output through a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA).

The system is built on over 20 acres of land, consists of more than 16,000 330-W panels, and is expected to meet approximately 20% of MEW’s annual needs. Advanced Solar Products designed and managed the installation while sub-contracting with Cianbro. The project, originally developed by Clear Energy, was secured by IGS Solar through a public bid process.

According to Calvin Ames, general manager of MEW, the project has met all of the utility’s objectives.

“It was a priority for us to enlist Maine-based companies where possible, which meant nearly all of the labor involved in the installation was performed by highly skilled individuals living right here in the Pine Tree State,” says Ames. “Completion of this solar array allows MEW to continue to contain costs for our residential, commercial, and industrial customers, while also using renewable energy. It’s a win-win.”

MEW will have the opportunity to purchase the system before the end of the 25-year PPA term, if desired.

Patrick Smith, vice president of IGS Solar, notes this is the first project the solar provider has completed in Maine.

“Opportunities for solar in Maine continue to grow,” he says. “Working with MEW and the local team to help control area customers’ energy costs using this renewable energy source has been a great success. We look forward to being a long-standing sustainability partner to MEW well into the future.”

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