Hochul Celebrates First Solar Energy Siting Permits of 2023

J.M. Lesinski

A shot of the 219 expressway on a sunny day in Orchard Park, New York.Photo byPhoto by J.M. Lesinski

New York State Governor Kathy Hochul recently celebrated the New York State Office of Renewable Energy’s issuance of three siting permits capable of delivering clean energy to more than 69,000 New York homes for a period of roughly 20 years.

"Accelerating the development of renewable energy is a top priority to ensure we reach our climate goals, create jobs, and spur economic development across the state," Hochul stated of the permits. "We're cementing our position as a national leader in climate action, and these investments will help create a clean and healthy New York where future generations can thrive."

The three siting permits, which are estimated to total a combined 309 MW of renewable energy are for the Homer Solar Energy Center, a 90 MW Solar Electric Generating Facility in the towns of Homer, Cortlandville, and Solon in Cortland county, Tracy Solar, a 119 MW Solar Electric Generating Facility in the towns of Orleans and Clayton in Jefferson county, and Riverside Solar, a 100 MW Solar Electric Generating Facility located in the towns of Lyme and Brownville, also in Jefferson county.

"The success of the § 94-c siting process is attributed to staff at ORES and its partner State agencies, as well as all involved stakeholders including local officials, community members, environmental groups, labor unions and the clean energy industry dedicated to building a cleaner, more resilient New York,” noted Office of Renewable Energy Siting Executive Director Houtan Moaveni of the permits. “This process stands as a regulatory model to make the clean energy transition happen efficiently and effectively to meet our carbon-emission reduction targets, while ensuring robust protection of our natural resources and consideration of all pertinent social, economic, and environmental factors."

With the three new permits, New York state has now approved a total of 20 major renewable energy projects since 2021.

"Investing in renewable energy is critical to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and easing the strain on energy grids here in New York and across the nation, and I am pleased to see these three important projects approved,” New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Basil Seggos remarked of the permits. “To achieve New York's nation-leading climate requirements outlined in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, we must continue to make strides to reach our ultimate goal of 100 percent zero-emission electricity through commitments to renewable sources such as solar."

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I have worked as a professional journalist for over five years now, covering the arts, music, food, politics, and culture up and down both coasts of the United States. I have a B.A. in English from SUNY Fredonia with minors in Psychology and Creative Writing, as well as an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from California State University, Fresno.

Buffalo, NY

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