Nexamp, together with National Grid, is addressing increased energy demand at the Coffeen substation in Watertown, New York with the construction of a new solar + storage facility that will eliminate the need for additional transmission lines or substation upgrades through a Non-Wires Alternative (NWA) approach. NWA projects are designed to reduce cost and complexity by using distributed energy resources such as solar + storage rather than relying on more traditional generation and infrastructure enhancements.
The Watertown Renewables project features more than 20,000 solar panels generating 8.4 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy and 10 Tesla Megapack systems providing 31 megawatt hours (MWh) of energy storage. Together, the solar and storage components of Watertown Renewables are engineered to give National Grid the ability to call on the system for up to 5.7 MW / 29 MWh up to 25 times per year either from the panels or the batteries.
“This project is significant because it represents a number of important firsts,” explained Chris Clark, Chief Development Officer, Nexamp. “It is our first NWA project and is the result of a lot of hard work and collaboration between Nexamp and National Grid. With solar + storage technology advancing so quickly, NWA projects represent new opportunities to innovate the way we solve demand issues on the grid. As we work on additional NWA solutions in other locations, we anticipate many exciting milestones ahead.”
Watertown Renewables is part of Nexamp’s extensive portfolio of distributed solar and storage assets and will also serve area residents through the company’s popular Community Solar program, providing energy costs savings to subscribers while delivering a new source of renewable energy to the local grid. This project is capable of offsetting the energy needs of more than 1,000 local residents who get their electricity from National Grid.
“National Grid is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by increasing the amount of renewable energy on the grid while improving reliability and affordability for customers,” said Brian Gemmell, National Grid’s Chief Operating Officer for Electric in New York. “Our recently released Clean Energy Vision plan outlines a pathway to achieve a fossil-free future to our energy systems that incorporates renewable sources of energy and storage solutions such as this non-wires alternative in Watertown. Nexamp’s expertise in developing and operating energy storage solutions that benefit utilities and communities made them a natural fit for this project.”
Nexamp has dozens of other solar + storage projects already in operation across the Northeast and around the country. As a provider that offers an integrated approach from design/build to owner/operator, Nexamp is a long-term partner to the communities in which it operates. The Watertown Renewables project is expected to be completed early next year.