Greenbacker Renewable Energy, through a subsidiary, bought two to-be-built solar projects in Maine from ReneSola Power Holdings.
The projects are the Athens Ridge solar project, a 3.8 MW array set to be constructed in Athens, Maine, north of Augusta, and the Mars Hill solar project, a 2.8 MW array slated for Mars Hill, on the state’s border with Canada.
The Athens Ridge and Mars Hill projects were sold at the notice-to-proceed stage. Greenbacker will complete construction and retain long-term ownership. Construction is expected to start in the first quarter of 2022, with both assets slated to reach commercial operation in the third quarter.
The projects mark the fifth and sixth installations acquired by Greenbacker from ReneSola this year. In the first quarter, Greenbacker bought a pair of the developer’s Utah solar assets, totaling 9.8 MW. The following quarter, it acquired two more pre-operational solar projects in Maine, Richmond Hill, a 2.5 MW installation, and Lebanon Road, a 2.8 MW array.
All four projects will be considered legacy additions to the state’s net energy billing program, which was capped in the second quarter of 2021. The program allows customers to realize savings by offsetting their electric bills either with owned or shared energy projects, like community solar. Those investments, in turn, spur further development.