Tremont selectmen are set to consider proposals for a solar farm like this one on the site of the town's closed landfill. ISLANDER FILE PHOTO

Solar farm in the works



TREMONT — Recent decisions by the Board of Selectmen have cleared the way for the town’s closed landfill to become the site of a small-scale solar farm.

The board at its Oct. 2 meeting gave the go-ahead to a request for proposals for a solar photovoltaic array on the three-acre landfill site. Last week, at an Oct. 16 meeting, they approved bylaws for a solar task force to review and make a recommendation on the proposals from solar contractors. Both received unanimous support.

The proposal calls for bids on a solar array capable of producing .4 megawatts of electricity and for the largest system possible for the site, probably 1 MW. The contractor also would initiate a power purchase agreement with investors which would provide power to municipal buildings.

According to the request for proposals, the town would benefit from spending less on electricity and provide a source of revenue derived from sales of excess power.

The request was drafted by Joe Blotnick, coordinator of A Climate to Thrive, an organization working to promote solar electric and other sustainability initiatives on Mount Desert Island.

As coordinator, Blotnick is, under the bylaws of the solar task force, one of the five members of that group. The makeup also includes a member of the Board of Selectmen, two members of the general public and a second representative of A Climate to Thrive who is a Tremont resident.

The task force is to meet with companies planning to submit proposals, review any submissions, conduct interviews as needed and make a recommendation on the best proposal for construction and financing. The task force’s meetings are to be open to the public.

Town Manager Dana Reed said this week that anyone wishing to become a member can call the town office at 244-7204 or fill out a volunteer form online at tremont.maine.gov.

 

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