Nexamp, a Massachusetts-based solar solutions provider, and NuGen Capital Management, a private equity firm investing in renewable energy and real estate, today marked the first month of operation of the 2.4 MW solar facility at Fairview Farms in Whately, Massachusetts. The project joins the trend of agribusinesses adopting solar, and will provide a consistent source of income to the multi-generational family farm that hosts the array, as well as substantial energy savings for the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
Nexamp developed, designed, constructed, and will operate the 8129-panel ground-mounted array, which was built on marginal farmland. NuGen Capital Management owns the project.
“Farmers here have three to four month periods of no income, and the regular income from this project will help even out the seasonal variability,” said Alan Sanderson, owner of Fairview Farms. Revenue from the solar array will go toward supporting its farming operations.
The project will also generate net metering credits that, thanks to Massachusetts’s support, will provide long-term energy savings to the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The university has agreed to purchase the net metering credits for this project, as well as another 1.5 MW generated from a second Nexamp solar project at a farm in Hadley, Massachusetts. Combined, these two projects are expected to save the university approximately $1.5 million over the first 20 years of operation.
“We are proud to partner with Nexamp and NuGen to expand the amount of clean, renewable energy available in Massachusetts,” said Juanita Holler, UMass Amherst’s Associate Vice Chancellor for Facilities & Campus Services. “The University of Massachusetts Amherst is dedicated to leadership in sustainability and climate change mitigation and this unique opportunity to support the development of solar PV on land near the Amherst campus was a perfect fit for us.…These projects are also providing important financial benefits to the University. We will leverage these savings to implement more energy efficiency and renewable energy projects on our campus.”
“Our partnerships with these farms and UMass Amherst are great examples of how solar energy can enhance our partners’ missions,” said Zaid Ashai, Chairman and CEO of Nexamp. He added, “These projects help optimize the use of our clients’ land to bring meaningful savings and income along with environmental benefits.”