CEP Renewables and CS Energy started construction on the 10-megawatt BEMS community solar landfill project on the Big Hill Landfill in Southampton, CEP announced Dec. 12.
The Red Bank-based company – which recently completed the state’s largest capped landfill solar array in Mount Olive in partnership with NJR Clean Energy Ventures – said the Southampton project will serve low- to moderate-income residents and will enable the township to recoup 40 years of back taxes and interest.
CEP said the Southampton project will produce enough clean energy to power 2,000 households.
Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration has placed a priority on clean energy, with the Energy Master Plan calling for the state to produce all its energy through clean sources by 2050.
CEP Executive Vice President Chris Ichter said in statement that the project, which is expected to be complete by May 2023, is similar to the Mount Olive job in that it was purchased by way of the redevelopment and tax lien foreclosure process, “a structure that was entirely unique before the Mount Olive project.”
Like the Mount Olive site, the Big Hill landfill area had been long abandoned and accrued millions in tax liens. As part of a public-private partnership, CEP acquired the tax liens from the township, paid back all past-due taxes, foreclosed on the property and is now the owner of the site.
CEP Renewables – which designs, develops and builds grid-connected, utility-scale solar projects – is partnering with engineering, procurement and construction energy firm CS Energy on the project.
“We look forward to working alongside CEP Renewables to convert a previously unusable site into a solar generating field that will provide substantial environmental and financial benefits to this local community,” said Michael Dillon, director of operations at Edison-based CS Energy.
According to CEP, the company has 16 landfill or brownfield projects in the works.d