By Beth David
BlueWave, a Community Solar development and fintech company, headquartered in Boston, MA, and MS Solar Solutions Corp, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Morgan Stanley, one of the world’s leading financial institutions, were joined on Monday, 5/23, by Fairhaven Town officials to mark the commissioning of a 1.1 MW Community Solar farm on Mill Road in Fairhaven.
The project was developed by BlueWave, in partnership with Morgan Stanley, and represents BlueWave’s first fully subscribed Community Solar project.
BlueWave and Morgan Stanley will jointly own and operate the project. Half of the energy has been purchased by WinnDevelopment, a national property development and management company.
WinnDevelopment will allocate the net metering credits generated from the project to its low-income residential properties in the Greater New Bedford area, representing approximately $500k in energy savings. The other half of the energy produced has been allocated to 45 residents and small businesses in Fairhaven and the surrounding Eversource territory.
“A core element of BlueWave’s mission is to provide all energy consumers the opportunity to go solar and reduce both their electricity costs and their carbon footprint. For those homeowners and small businesses who can’t put solar on their rooftops, Community Solar is an incredibly valuable tool to meet that objective,” said BlueWave’s Managing Principal, John DeVillars.
“We greatly enjoyed working with the Town of Fairhaven, our contractor Pro-Tech Energy Solutions, Eversource, and our engineering team. This was an exceptionally smooth and successful project and an example of great team-work all around,” said BlueWave’s Managing Director, Aidan Foley.
“WinnCompanies applauds BlueWave’s commitment to Community Solar,” said Darien Crimmin, Vice President of Energy and Sustainability at WinnDevelopment. “This project proves that the benefits of offsite Community Solar can extend to low-income multifamily rental communities.”
The Fairhaven project will start generating savings for customers by June 2016.
“I think it’s very exciting to have a community solar project which is very unique,” said Selectboard chairperson Charles Murphy in a phone interview.
He noted that some of the power from the project will benefit low income housing.
“And I think it’s great we’re utilizing solar for the benefit of the total community,” he said, adding that everyone benefits from reduced carbon emissions.
BlueWave received a Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) agreement from the town, which spreads out business tax payments over the life of the project. Instead of paying the full amount of personal property taxes, which is a tax on equipment that businesses pay, based on the current year’s assessment, the company will pay $20,330 each year for 20 years.
Due to depreciation of the panels, the company would have to pay $52,000 in the first year, with the amount dwindling down to about $16,000 at the end of 20 years.
The town gets the same amount in taxes over the life of the project, $406,600.
According to a press release, BlueWave is currently in construction on Community Solar projects in Western and Southeastern Massachusetts enabling residents of those regions to now become BlueWave Community Solar members.
BlueWave has played a leading role in the Massachusetts solar industry, where the company has executed solar power purchase agreements with more than 20 cities and towns, academic institutions, and affordable housing providers. The company has created 300 local engineering and construction jobs across the Commonwealth and as of December 2015 has generated $4.5M in annual savings for its customers.
This track record and development success has earned BlueWave strong endorsements from mayors, college and school heads, and affordable housing advocates.
BlueWave is a solar energy company founded on a mission to protect our planet by expanding access to solar for everyone, everywhere. We are driven to transform the energy status quo —enabling communities to take control of their energy production, and consumers to choose clean, low cost power. Founded in Massachusetts, with operations around the globe, BlueWave remains committed to our founding principles: preserving the environment; honesty and transparency in everything we do; and respecting and supporting our employees, partners, and customers.
To learn more about BlueWave visit www.bluewaverenewables.com and www.bluewave-capital.com
Click to download the 5/26/16 issue in its entirety: 05-26-16 SpanishShip