ReVision Energy, which has installed more than 9,000 electrical systems since 2003, is building this solar array in Skowhegan. Yarmouth will tap into one due to go online in Sidney next June. Courtesy ReVision Energy

YARMOUTH — Through its participation in a solar array being built in Sidney, the town looks to save $3.15 million over 20 years and offset 85% of its annual cost for electricity.

According to April Humphrey, a town councilor and solar advocate, ReVision Energy has a power purchase agreement with the town and is building the ground mount array, which it expects to go online June 1, 2021.

The company – which states that it has installed more than 9,000 electric systems in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts since 2003 – anticipates that Yarmouth’s level of participation in the project will “offset almost 2.6 million pounds of carbon pollution each year by utilizing a local, clean, reliable source of electricity,” according to Nick Sampson, a commercial solar consultant with ReVision. “This is equivalent to over 132,000 gallons of gasoline not being burned or taking almost 250 passenger vehicles off the road.”

Yarmouth spends about $366,000 a year on electricity, Humphrey said.

“One of the reasons that I have been so excited about this project is that I feel like it’s a win-win,” she said. “We’re helping the environment, we’re helping to reduce our carbon output. But we’re also saving the town money and … that’s something that people really care about. People want to know that we’re spending their money wisely.”

Through a solar power purchase agreement, the town is buying power generated by the array from an investor which ReVision has identified and paired with, according to Sampson. Yarmouth is due to use 2.075 megawatts of the array’s 2.59-megawatt capacity, which should generate 2.45 kilowatt hours of electricity annually.

The return on investment for the investor comes from federal tax credits and kilowatt hours sold to the town, which will be sold at a better rate than the area utility, he noted.

This isn’t Yarmouth’s first foray into solar power. ReVision worked with the town in 2014 on a 28-kilowatt rooftop array for its Public Works garage in 2014, also financed through a purchasing power agreement, Sampson said. The company also installed a 3-kilowatt demonstration project for Yarmouth High School.

“We’re incredibly excited to have the opportunity to work with the town again on this much larger phase two project to offset the majority of the town’s electricity expenses with local, renewable electricity,” Sampson said.

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