YORK — Thousands of Mainers will now receive the benefits of clean solar power thanks to the first completed Nautilus community solar farms.
The five newly opened projects represent a combined 31.5 megawatts and are located in Cumberland, Kennebec, Knox, Somerset, and York Counties. Together they provide a clean energy alternative to nearly 2,000 residential homeowners and renters, local businesses as well as the commercial customer Hannaford Brothers within the CMP utility territory.
As many as three-quarters of American households are unable to access rooftop solar — because they rent or live in an apartment building, the financial investment is too prohibitive, or they simply do not want panels on their roof. The goal of community solar is to provide all residential energy users access to solar power.
Anyone who pays an electricity bill can subscribe to their portion of a community solar farm, regardless of financial means or property ownership. Solar power is also less expensive than other electricity sent to the grid, and those savings are passed to subscribers. The result is a lower utility bill and more local solar for the community.
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"We are proud to play a role in the growth of renewable energy in Maine with the completion of our first community solar farms in the state,” said Eric LaMora, director of community solar at Nautilus. “These projects are a wonderful example of how investing in local community solar can ensure the environmental and cost-savings benefits are accessible to all Mainers. We are also thrilled to announce that there is more to come. We will be opening additional community solar farms by year-end which will provide an affordable clean energy choice to even more Mainers.”
This article originally appeared on Portsmouth Herald: Five new community solar farms open in Maine