Greenbacker Acquires Nine Net-Metering Solar Projects in Vermont

Portfolio will deliver clean energy and help farms and dairies across the state save millions on power bills

PVTIME – Greenbacker Renewable Energy Company LLC (“GREC” or “Greenbacker”), a leading climate-focused investment manager and independent power producer, has purchased, through a wholly owned subsidiary, a portfolio of up to nine pre-operational solar projects from Norwich Solar (“Norwich”). When completed, the projects will lower power bills for local farmers and give new life to brownfield sites restricted from most uses.

The projects have long-term Net Metering Agreements in place with over 30 agricultural offtakers—local farms and dairies across the state. The net-metering aspect of the portfolio means that the utility will reduce the offtakers’ power bills by the amount of clean energy the projects supply to the grid. Each solar project is expected, on average, to save local farmers approximately $500,000 on energy costs over the lifecycle of the projects.

Along with helping farmers save money on electricity costs, Norwich expects the portfolio will generate approximately $7.5 million in local wages during construction, as well as provide local landowners with supplemental long-term income via land lease payments. Additionally, Greenbacker is also actively assessing the portfolio’s potential for agrivoltaics (that is, using project sites for both solar photovoltaic power production and agricultural activities).

The portfolio represents Greenbacker’s first transaction with Norwich, a developer, designer, and engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) provider of clean energy projects throughout New England. Norwich will continue to perform EPC services for the portfolio.

Along with the clean energy and economic benefits these solar projects provide, three project sites will also transform previous brownfields into sources of cheaper renewable power. The Andover project is located on part of a reclaimed gravel pit no longer in operation, and the Thetford Post Mills and Putney Green Acres projects are located on an abandoned landfill and former paper sludge disposal site, respectively.

Each project will have a clean power–production capacity of approximately 840 kWdc, for a total portfolio capacity of up to 7.6 MWdc. Five of the projects are slated to reach commercial operation by the end of 2022, with the other four projects expected to enter operation by the second quarter of 2023.

Greenbacker’s fleet of clean energy projects comprises nearly 2.9 GW of generating capacity (including this portfolio and other assets that are to be constructed). Since June 2016, Greenbacker’s real assets have produced over 4.9 million megawatt-hours1 of clean energy, abating more than 3.5 million metric tons of carbon.2 Today these projects support over 5,200 green jobs.3

1 Data is as of June 30, 2022.
2 EPA Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator. Data is as of June 30, 2022.
3 Green jobs are calculated from the International Renewable Energy Agency‘s measurement that one megawatt of renewable power supports 3.8 jobs. Data is as of June 30, 2022.