Gloucester Marine Terminal is partnering with solar technology leader SunPower Corporation to build the largest rooftop solar installation in North America—a 1.1-million-square-foot project on the roof of the terminal’s refrigerated warehouse near the Walt Whitman Bridge on the Delaware River.
Known as Riverside Renewable Energy LLC, the $42 million, privately funded project calls for installation of 27,528 photovoltaic rooftop solar panels that will generate nine megawatts of electricity—or roughly enough to power 1,500 homes—at Gloucester Marine Terminal, which is owned by the Holt family. The Riverside project will be nearly twice as large as any previous rooftop solar installation in New Jersey. Construction is underway and should be completed by autumn.
When completed, the Riverside project will generate the equivalent of nearly 80% of the terminal’s power demand. According to estimates provided by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the system is expected to offset more than 9,500 tons of carbon dioxide, about the same amount that would be offset by planting 400,000 trees or removing 1,700 cars from the road.
The Riverside project will rely in part on the availability of federal investment tax credits that supply tax incentives to spur the development of green energy sources systems nationwide; and the continued support of Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs) created through the New Jersey Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS), which also enhances the economic viability of the project. Riverside will sell the SRECs and environmental benefits associated with the system.
In addition to the Holt family, the Riverside project is a partnership involving SunPower, a global solar technology company; Rabobank, a bank and financier of renewable energy projects, which will lead financing for the venture; and PSE&G, which will play a critical role in the interconnection of the project.
At the site, Sun Power is installing its T5 Solar Roof Tile system, the solar industry’s first non-penetrating rooftop product that combines a high-efficiency solar panel, frame, and mounting system into a single, pre-engineered unit.
“At nine megawatts, this is a milestone solar installation made possible with SunPower’s high-efficiency panels and T5 Solar Roof Tile System,” said Tom Leyden, managing director at SunPower. ”By hosting this system, Holt Logistics will reliably maximize its savings on electricity costs at the Terminal over the next 25 years or more.”