After approximately four years of planning, permitting and design, the District’s selected contractor, EDF Renewables out of White River Junction, VT, has finally broken ground on a 4 Mega-Watt (MW) Solar Array off Lawsbrook Road at the District’s well site there. This array is equipped with battery storage and will be connected to Eversource’s power grid on Lawsbrook Road. The majority of the generated power will be purchased by a Massachusetts municipality, with the District off-taking a portion to satisfy the majority of our electrical needs. Additionally, this project will generate land lease revenue which will be used for much needed capital improvements, upgrades and maintenance to the District’s water supply and distribution network. The work is the culmination of many years of planning, as the District voters approved the use of real property at the District’s Annual Meeting in 2014, and the promulgation of a Request for Proposals that was issued back in the fall of 2017, resulting in the selection of GRO Solar, now EDF Renewables. The array will be owned and operated by EDF, with the benefit to the District in the form of lease revenue and lowered power supply costs. We expect that this array will be commissioned in late 2021 to early 2022. Thereafter, EDF will be moving over to the District’s property at 16 Knox Trail to construct a second array rated at 1 MW with battery storage that will be direct power supply to the District’s South Acton Water Treatment Plant (SAWTP) located off High Street. We expect that array to be commissioned in mid-2022. We are thankful to the District voters for approving these projects, the Town of Acton for their collaborative partnership and support of these renewable energy projects, and the local legislative delegation, Senator Jamie Eldridge, Representative Dan Sena and Representative Tami Gouveia, for their assistance in moving the projects along and overall support of renewable energy, a critical aspect of addressing the global climate crisis.
Chris Allen, District Manager