New solar facility to provide renewable energy for Devens Utilities Department as well as economic benefits for the municipality, the Shirley Water District, and the people of Shirley.
FREDERICK, MD - August 15, 2014 - Empower Energies, Inc., a leading Clean
commissioning of a 3.7MWDC (3.0MWAC) solar array in the Town of Shirley, MA.
The ground-mounted installation features 13,047 6.5'-by-3' photovoltaic (PV)
solar panels, situated on 27 acres of Shirley Water District land, providing
20 acres of power production.
The project was co-developed with Washington, DC-based EPG Solar. It will
deliver over 4.9 million kWh of electricity annually to the contiguous
Devens Utilities Department, significantly increasing the renewable energy
contribution to the MassDevelopment subsidiary's energy portfolio.
Jim Moore of the Devens Utilities Department noted that Mass Development was
originally looking to add renewable energy into their portfolio with
facilities built behind their meter, but ultimately opened the bidding up to
power supply coming in from outside Devens, 'if someone could work out the
Empower Energies Manager of Business Development Micah Stanley credited the
ingenuity of Robert Babcock, a Managing Partner with EPG Solar, and his
team, for initiating the project. "His inventiveness enabled us,
essentially, to put two separate and distinct projects together, and then
enabled us to cross utility grid lines," Stanley said.
"From the beginning, this project has been a model of perseverance and
creativity for all of the parties involved," Babcock said. "We worked
diligently in cooperation with all of the constituencies - the Town of
Shirley Energy Committee, the Water District, and the Devens Utilities
Department - to best represent the interests of the people they serve."
"(At the Devens Utilities Department) we are grateful as off-takers to be
receiving the power from this facility," Moore added.
"It is exciting and humbling to 'flip the switch' after so many moving parts
have come together," said Len Jornlin, CEO of Empower Energies. "Projects
like this one are characterized by a complex set of transactions, and the
collaboration of so many stakeholders. We were thrilled to serve as the hub
of all this effort. It enabled us to connect the dots, and help our
co-developer, EPG Solar, to get the project over the finish line for Green
States Energy and the Town of Shirley."
Empower Energies and EPG Solar selected Green States Energy, Inc., to be the
investor/owner of the solar system.
"What a great fit this is for us," said Stephen Clevett, CEO of Green States
Energy. "As an owner and operator of clean electric generation plants, of
course it is our objective is to build our asset base. And this project is
perfectly scaled for our growth strategy at this particular point in time.
But we also want to work with customers and partners who share our values,
and are moving forward for the right reasons. We found that here, and we
look forward to being part of the Shirley and Devens communities for years
"This facility is the culmination of two years of work involving multiple
agencies and municipal entities, with everyone striving toward one common
goal: To take care of the residents in the community," said Town of Shirley
Energy Committee Chairman Bryan Dumont. "The result is that the Shirley
Water District is going to generate revenue which is going to help them
offset expenses, and the town is going to do the same thing."
Shirley Energy Committee Secretary Ann Towne expanded on that theme, noting
that the solar facility provides a revenue stream to the Water District in
the form of a land lease, and to the Town of Shirley in the form of an
annual tax payment. "It's a 20-year agreement, with a 10-year renewable
option," she said. "We negotiated a contract this past Christmas Eve and,
within six months, 'Voila!' The system is generating power."
And, according to Stanley, because the system is generating clean
electricity, it reduces the amount of coal necessary for the production of
that same amount of electricity by 3,650,000 lbs. "This is why Governor
Patrick's solar and clean energy program is so pertinent," he added.
"Because it enables us to offset the carbon-based fuel that we would
otherwise be using to produce the electricity that powers our lives."
Jornlin noted that the Shirley installation supports Massachusetts Governor
Deval Patrick's goal of 1600MW of solar development by 2020. "Massachusetts
is really leading right now, Jornlin said. "From the Patrick Administration
to communities like Shirley that are really making it happen, the policy,
the political will, the incentives, and the local engagement are all there
"We're certain that this (installation) is going to stand as a model for
communities across the Commonwealth which are looking to invest in solar
projects," noted Meagan Green, District Director for Massachusetts State
Representative Jennifer Benson.
Meg Lusardi, Acting Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Energy
Resources (DOER), agreed. "This installation is a huge achievement," Lusardi
said. "As we always like to say at DOER, the best things really do happen at
the local level. Shirley was designated as a Green Community in December of
2011. And now we're celebrating the completion of the first installation of
a three-phase solar development project. The town of Shirley is definitely
doing its part to lead Massachusetts in its clean energy agenda."
"The profile of energy is changing dramatically, and as people have come to
understand solar and the other renewable energy technologies that we offer,
there are so many 'win-win' opportunities available at the community level,
and beyond," Jornlin concluded. "That is certainly the case in Shirley. This
project is a great example of where the town and its citizens, the land
owner, the electricity off-taker, and the system owner all benefit, while
creating jobs and opportunity right here in their community. We are
privileged to have served as the developer on this project, and we look
forward to the opportunity to work again with the great team that Shirley
has assembled on future phases of this project."
About Empower Energies
Empower Energies, Inc., with offices in Frederick, Maryland and Troy,
Michigan, is a clean energy portfolio solutions provider focused on applying
the right mix of solar, cogeneration, and energy optimization - with
financing - to meet the business and sustainability objectives of
municipalities as well as multi-facility industrial and commercial
organizations, such as General Motors, both in the United States and
internationally. More information about Empower Energies can be found at
About EPG Solar, LLC
EPG Solar LLC, located in the Washington, DC area, is a leading developer of
utility-scale industrial solar facilities with a focus on projects in
certain key east coasts markets including: Massachusetts, New Jersey, Ohio,
Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and Washington, DC. The principals of EPG
Solar have been involved in the development of over 300MW of renewable
energy projects and have facilitated over $7.0 billion in infrastructure
About Green States Energy, Inc.
Headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, Green States Energy, Inc. is an
Independent Power Producer (IPP) that acquires, develops, and operates clean
electric generating plants the Americas and Europe. The Company currently
owns 10 operating solar PV power plants in the U.S. with a total capacity of
more than 15-MW, with another 3.6 MW under construction and over 100 MW
under development, which includes solar PV, biomass, and cogeneration/CHP
projects. GSE plans to complete the acquisition and development of
additional projects in 2014 with the ultimate goal of owning over 100 MW of
clean energy projects by 2017.