Not every home or business may be suitable for solar panels, but that doesn’t mean they can’t benefit from clean energy and savings. With the completion of a new community solar project in Old Bridge, New Jersey, NJR Clean Energy Ventures (CEV), the renewable energy subsidiary of New Jersey Resources, and AC Power, a woman-owned brownfield solar developer, are making clean energy more accessible to customers, with consideration for low-to-moderate-income residents.
Community solar projects provide the benefits of clean energy to homeowners, renters and businesses who may otherwise be unable to install or access it. Composed of 5,746 solar panels, the 2.8-MW array will provide renewable energy and reduced electricity costs to approximately 460 homes in Middlesex and Monmouth counties, with 51% of the generation supporting low- and middle-income residents.
CEV will lease approximately eight acres of the underutilized space for the array for 35 years. The Old Bridge project was accepted as part of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities’ Community Solar Pilot Program and supports that state’s climate goals.
“Our Old Bridge Community Solar project is another example of Clean Energy Ventures commitment to deliver renewable energy to customers, helping drive New Jersey towards its clean energy goals,” said Robert Pohlman, Vice President of NJR Clean Energy Ventures. “By turning this brownfield into a source of clean electricity, we are making the benefits of solar power more accessible for those who may otherwise not be able to benefit from an onsite array.”
The Global Landfill served the community of Old Bridge from 1968 until 1984, when it closed due to a slope failure on the site’s perimeter. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection ordered operations to cease, and the landfill has been inactive ever since. In 1989, the site was placed on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agencies’ National Priorities List of Superfund sites. After extensive environmental cleanup and monitoring over the past 30 years, remedial action at the landfill was successfully completed, paving the way for the Old Bridge Community Solar array.
“AC Power’s mission is to reenergize communities with solar, one brownfield at a time,” said Annika Colston, founder and CEO of AC Power, who developed the project. “We live in a critical time, where environmental stewardship and community ties are vital. We are proud to work with companies like CEV to transform underutilized space into clean energy.”
The Old Bridge Community Solar project was developed and permitted by AC Power, a company with experience turning brownfields into clean energy assts. CEV acquired the project from AC Power in March of 2023 and retained CS Energy to build the facility. The project was placed into service in November of 2023.
“Through our collaborative efforts, we were able to revitalize a decades-old former landfill and turn it into a beacon of sustainability and clean energy,” said Old Bridge Mayor Owen Henry. “Not only does this project symbolize our community’s commitment to green energy, but it also promises tangible benefits for our residents, including job creation and energy savings. I am excited for the brighter, greener future we are building together for Old Bridge Township.”
Since 2009, CEV has invested over $1.2 billion in commercial and residential solar projects and today maintains 70 commercial solar assets across six states and a portfolio of approximately 470 MWs of installed capacity.
News item from New Jersey Resources