PSC Embarks on 200 MegaWatt Community Solar Pilot Program

A Frederick News-Post article (2017-04-06) reported that the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) is starting a new three-year pilot program designed to add nearly 200 megawatts of community solar projects. The article stated that the PSC plans to accept applications on April 10. From the article:

“We’re very hopeful to see a range of projects,” [PSC senior advisor Jon] Kucskar said.

Thirty percent of the projects are designated to improve access for low- and moderate-income households. A percentage has also been set aside for small solar projects and ones that will be built on brownfields. …

“It’s a pretty robust pilot,” [Potomac Edison spokesman Todd] Meyers said.

Community solar could take several forms. A church could install an array and sell credits to parishioners or donate them to charity to help low- and moderate-income households, or a group of neighbors could purchase a lot and credit the power, Kucskar said as hypothetical examples.

Industrial and commercial projects may make up a majority of the available megawatts, Kucskar said. No project can exceed 2 megawatts.

The commission hopes to see a range of projects, because it will supply better data on the cost and benefits of community solar, the technical impacts and low-income access, to name a few, Kucskar said. A report is expected to be released in July 2019, he said.

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