Renewvia Energy Corp., Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G) and two Renewvia Energy partners cut the ribbon on a 1.26-MW solar system located at a state-of-the-art distribution center at the Northport Industrial Center in Elizabeth, N.J., Wednesday. It is Renewvia Energy’s largest project to date and its completion pushes the PSE&G Solar Loan Program across the $100 million mark for solar financing in New Jersey.
“The Northport project is another ideal example of the compelling sustainability and business benefits that are offered by Renewvia Energy‘s solar developments,” said Marion Smith III, CEO of Renewvia Energy. “We’re especially pleased with the partnerships we formed with PSE&G and our two Atlanta-based associates. This project is proof of New Jersey’s strong solar market and the compelling sustainability and business benefits that are offered by Renewvia Energy‘s developments.”
The solar system is located on the roof of a high profile, Class A distribution center developed by Atlanta-based Industrial Developments International Inc. (IDI). The grid-connected PV solar electrical system features 5,304 high efficiency solar panels, manufactured by Atlanta-based Suniva, mounted on approximately 170,000 square feet of rooftop.
The $9 million project was financed in part by the PSE&G Solar Loan Program, which makes $247 million in loans available to help the utility’s electric customers install solar systems. The PSE&G Solar Loan Program typically helps finance about 50 percent of a solar system’s total cost and accepts the Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) that the system generates as payment for the loan.
“Our Solar Loan program was designed to remove the financial barriers to solar construction and help make New Jersey a leader in solar development,” said Al Matos, PSE&G’s vice president of renewables and energy solutions. “The $100 million mark is a great accomplishment for PSE&G and New Jersey. We have helped finance almost 400 projects that have added more than 29 megawatts of solar power in the state, along the way creating jobs, helping the environment and holding down utility costs. We are pleased to have worked with Renewvia Energy and their partners in helping to bring more clean solar power to New Jersey.”
“Installations such as this help propel the U.S. towards a more sustainable future by generating clean, renewable energy that can be sold directly into the grid, or in this case, directly to the businesses in the warehouse,” said John Baumstark, CEO of Suniva Inc. “This rooftop project provides a clear example of how to create sustainable energy solutions that provide significant ROI.”
Renewvia Energy owns and operates the Northport solar project and sells power using PPAs (Power Purchase Agreements) with the building’s tenants. The solar system is expected to generate more than 1,500 MWh of electricity annually and IDI’s tenants, Shipco Transport and Exel, Inc expect to save at least $50,000 per year on their electricity bills. Because of Renewvia’s unique structure, both of IDI’s tenants benefit from the one net-metered system, and do so without the long-term commitments typical of PPA-backed projects. From an environmental perspective, the system’s annual carbon dioxide offset, a reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide or greenhouse gases, is expected to total 247 tons and over a 25-year period will reach 12,630 tons. That is the equivalent of annually removing 98 automobiles from the road or 1.2 million miles not driven, and equal to planting 122 acres of pine trees.
“This is our first solar project and we believe this will be a model for our future green initiatives,” said Tim Gunter, CEO of IDI. “We are committed to environmental sustainability and reducing our carbon footprint at our other properties. Also, we believe solar power systems like this drive real savings and enhance tenant retention, while ultimately increasing the resale value of our property.”