The recently completed ILR Landfill Solar Farm in Edison, NJ is the latest example of how PSE&G, through our Solar 4 All® program, is using landfills and brownfields to increase the amount of universal solar in New Jersey. Built on a long-closed landfill on the banks of the Raritan River, the ILR project returns 21 acres of landfill space to productive use through its 23,834 solar panels that will power more than 1,200 homes each year.
Like all of our Solar 4 All projects, the ILR Solar Farm is connected directly to the electric grid, providing universal access to solar power to all of our electric customers, not just those who own solar systems on their homes or businesses.
We believe that universal solar projects like ILR and the others that are part of Solar 4 All are the fairest way to install solar because all of our electric customers share in both the costs and the benefits of the project. And with landfill and brownfield solar projects, these costs are about 40 percent less than those for a typical residential net metered solar projects because of the economies of scale that can be realized. Universal solar projects like ILR are helping New Jersey to meet its solar generation goals in a more cost effective, efficient manner.
But the most obvious benefit to repurposing remediated brownfields and properly closed landfills for solar development is that it reclaims and reuses these sites as viable solar resources. In a small, densely populated state like New Jersey, preserving open space by developing solar on landfills and brownfields is a major benefit. We are proud to be a national leader in landfill and brownfield solar development with the ILR project as the ninth solar farm that we have built on a landfill or brownfield site. These projects fill more than 190 acres of otherwise unusable space with more than 175,000 solar panels that provide more than 52 megawatts-dc of solar power, which is enough electricity to supply more than 8,500 homes a year.
And we will be building more.
This past November, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities approved the construction of an additional 33 megawatts-dc of Solar 4 All projects exclusively on landfills and brownfields in PSE&G’s electric service territory. We will start work on the next landfill or brownfield project this year, and we expect to build three or four additional solar farms in total between now and 2020. Beyond that, we know that there is still enough suitable landfill and brownfield space in PSE&G’s electric service territory to build nearly 100 additional megawatts-dc of solar capacity.
We’re all proud of the ILR Landfill Solar Farm and the work we have done to turn New Jersey landfills and brownfields green with solar power. With the continued support of our regulators and state public policy makers we look forward to putting our demonstrated expertise in landfill and brownfield solar development to work to transform even more landfills and brownfields across New Jersey into sources of pride and clean renewable energy.
Check out the video about the ILR Landfill Solar Farm on nj.com.
Program Manager – Solar4 All®