Defense contractor General Dynamics said Monday that it has entered into an agreement with Longroad Energy to purchase power for its Bath Iron Works shipyard from six pending solar projects in Maine.

The company said BIW is the first major industrial user in Maine to enter into such a relationship, known as net-energy billing. It said the arrangement will help BIW retain its competitive position among shipyards in other states by partially offsetting the higher cost of energy in Maine.

The company didn’t disclose how much power it plans to purchase or the related cost savings it anticipates.

BIW is the state’s largest manufacturer and a major electricity consumer. Longroad is a Boston-based energy development company with an office in Portland that has developed solar and wind energy projects in the state.

The solar projects involving BIW are set to break ground in 2021.

“The dual benefits of achieving a reduction in energy costs, which improves our ability to compete for new work while directly participating in clean energy development right here in Maine, is a great example of what can happen when we work together,” BIW President Dirk Lesko said in a statement.

The agreement helps provide Longroad with contractual certainty to secure the required construction financing. BIW will receive monthly net-energy billing credits based on the amount of electricity produced by the solar projects. BIW will transfer a portion of the credit value to Longroad. The value of the credit that BIW retains represents BIW’s savings.

“With these projects, Bath Iron Works is showing how companies across Maine are embracing clean energy solutions that address climate change, support critical investment in the generation of homegrown, renewable energy and create good-paying jobs for Maine people,” Gov. Janet Mills said in a statement. “Partnerships like this will help make Maine a leader in the fast-growing clean energy economy.”


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