Norwich Solar celebrated completion of its 45th community solar installation earlier this summer in Fairlee, Vermont. The 500-kWAC ground mount system will provide Kinney Drugs with solar net metering credits. The array is located in Green Mountain Power territory. The new solar array is tucked behind the Fairlee Drive-In Theater and is not visible from Route 5. The site was a marginal hay field that was difficult for farming equipment to access. Norwich Solar improved road access to construct the array and provided the landowner with ample acreage for haying.
“This project adds locally produced renewable energy to Vermont and is a positive investment in the community’s efforts to confront climate change,” said Jim Merriam, CEO of Norwich Solar. “Installations such as these strengthen our local business, communities and landowners alike.”
Norwich Solar signed a 25-year lease agreement with property owners who were looking for a way to integrate renewable energy into their long-term land use plans. The family has solar panels on their home already and welcomed the opportunity to offer their property for larger-scale solar because of the benefits of renewable energy for the planet. It also aligns with their plans to raise livestock and use the fenced solar array for pasturing the lambs, which further utilizes the land while keeping the grass down around the panels.
As the sole customer of the site, Kinney Drugs (a subsidiary of KPH Healthcare Services) will receive credit for nearly 100% of the energy produced by the array. The company is a well-recognized regional business with 22 drug stores operating in Vermont and has more than 100 locations in total. As an employee-owned company, it focuses on delivering quality care and cost savings to their customers. By purchasing solar power through community-scale net metering, Kinney Drugs is making sound business investments that reduces its energy costs and supports ecological benefits that reduce carbon emissions.
“We are thrilled to partner with Norwich as the sole off-taker of the solar project in Fairlee, Vermont,” said Mike Burgess, KPH’s VP of financial planning and treasury. “KPH is committed to do our part in supporting the development of local renewable energy within our community and help to preserve the environment for generations to come. This is the second significant solar strategy we have implemented in recent years.”
Energy advisor Power Management Company of Rochester, New York, helped facilitate the arrangement between KPH and Norwich Solar.
News item from Norwich Solar