Nautilus Solar Energy, announced the acquisition of eight community solar projects in Maine totaling 47.2 megawatts direct current from ISM Solar Development. Construction of the projects, located in Cumberland, Knox, Oxford and York counties, is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2021. Upon completion, these projects will provide a clean energy option to almost 10,000 households within the Central Maine Power electric utility territory.
These projects are part of Maine’s Net Energy Billing program, which was amended in June 2019 by Governor Mills to provide renewable energy benefits and reduced costs for its residential customers. Nautilus is the long-term owner of the projects and is also responsible for acquiring and managing customer subscriptions. Any residential CMP utility customer is eligible to subscribe to the projects through Nautilus with no upfront cost, no long-term commitment and no cancellation fees.
The projects are expected to generate nearly 70 million kilowatt hours annually, contributing to Maine’s goals of providing economic growth, workforce opportunities, and relying on 80 percent clean energy by 2030 and 100% by 2050.
This will be the third transaction between Nautilus and ISM. With the successful completion of two operational projects in Rhode Island, including Burrillville, the longest running residential community solar project in the state, Nautilus and ISM have demonstrated success working together in the community solar marketplace.
“This acquisition significantly expands our renewable energy presence in Maine, and symbolizes Nautilus’s pledge to provide equitable, affordable access to community solar for all Mainers,” said Jim Rice, co-Founder and co-CEO of Nautilus Solar. “This deal exemplifies Nautilus’s commitment to working closely with our early stage development partners and to become a leading acquirer of solar portfolios across the country,” added Jeffrey Cheng, President of Nautilus Solar.
“My family has lived on Thompson Lake for over 25 years and we have an office in Poland. With local ties and a vested interest in Maine, we’re particularly proud to play a role in bringing community solar to our neighbors,” said Greg Lucini, CEO of ISM Solar. “It was a pleasure to work with local landowners, town officials, Maine DEP, and CMP in developing these projects.”
Community solar is one of the fastest growing sectors of the Maine clean energy industry. Community solar provides locally produced, affordable clean energy without any rooftop panels to install or upfront fees. Anyone who pays an electric bill can subscribe to a solar project in their area, helping to build stronger communities, fight climate change, and save on their electricity bill.
These community solar projects will provide more benefits:
- Support to Maine’s economy through a commitment to working with local engineering, construction, professional services and related Maine-based firms.
- Provide thousands of residents with an equitable and affordable renewable energy choice.
- The creation of over 100 projected construction and ongoing operations and maintenance jobs.
- Environmental equivalent of planting over 800,000 trees or taking over 10,000 cars off the road for the year, curbing greenhouse gas emissions and slowing harmful effect of climate change.