solar panels in field
December 8, 2023

Governor Hochul Announces Approval of Solar Facility in Franklin County

Governor Hochul Announces Approval of Solar Facility in Franklin County
100-Megawatt Project Expected to Create More Than 130 Jobs and Power 16,500 Homes
15 Large-Scale Renewable Energy Projects Approved by ORES Since 2021 Brings 2.3-Gigawatts of New Clean Energy to State

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting has issued a final siting permit for Brookside Solar LLC to develop, design, construct, operate, maintain, and decommission a 100-megawatt solar energy facility in the Towns of Burke and Chateaugay, Franklin County. Once completed, this solar facility is expected to generate enough clean energy to power over 16,500 New York homes and reduce carbon emissions by over 131,000 metric tons, which is equivalent to taking nearly 29,000 cars off the road. This solar facility is also expected to create more than 130 full-time equivalent jobs during construction and operation.

“New York is taking yet another step forward in building a clean economy,” Governor Hochul said. “By issuing this final siting permit, we're creating jobs, providing New York families and businesses with clean and sustainable energy, and building a better future for generations of New Yorkers to come."

Today's announcement marks the 15th major renewable energy facility permit issued by the Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES) since 2021. In total, these 15 permits represent over 2.3 gigawatts of new clean energy permitted. This success highlights New York's climate leadership and reflects the most rapid pace of major renewable energy facility approvals in State history.

Brookside Solar is expected to provide over $12.7 million in the first 20 years to the counties, towns and school districts in the form of payment-in-lieu of taxes and host community agreements to invest in infrastructure, additional services, and resources for residents in the communities hosting the facility.

ORES conducted a timely, detailed, and transparent review process with robust public participation to ensure the proposed project meets or exceeds the requirements of Executive Law § 94-c and its implementing regulations. This project is another example of the State’s collaborative approach to permitting of major renewable energy facilities that is aimed at resolving local concerns without the need for adjudication. As this project proceeds, ORES will continue to work cooperatively with the host municipalities and community stakeholders to see the project through to construction.

Today’s decision may be obtained by going to the Office’s website at ores.ny.gov/permit-applications.

New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting Executive Director Houtan Moaveni said, "The success of the 94-c siting process is attributed to staff at ORES and its partner State agencies, as well as all involved stakeholders including local officials, community members, environmental groups, labor unions and the clean energy industry dedicated to building a cleaner, more resilient New York. This process stands as a regulatory model and with the continued leadership of Governor Kathy Hochul, ORES remains well-positioned to help the State achieve its climate goals while ensuring robust protection of our natural resources and communities.”

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “Solar energy development is providing more clean electricity for the state's power grid, bolstering efforts to meet the requirements set in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act while creating good-paying green jobs that benefit New York’s economy. Governor Hochul’s sustained prioritization of renewable energy projects continues to advance the state's transition away from fossil fuels, reducing climate pollution and improving air quality.”

New York State Department of Labor Commissioner and Climate Action Council member, Roberta Reardon said, “New York State continues to build a strong clean energy economy. The career opportunities created for New Yorkers in Franklin County is a prime example of how Governor Hochul’s conservation-focused plan to reduce carbon emissions continues to be a prosperous step forward for New York State’s workforce.”

Alliance for Clean Energy New York Executive Director Anne Reynolds said, “This is a win-win for all New Yorkers, especially those in Franklin County, and we applaud everyone who helped make this announcement possible. This project will not only provide much-needed clean renewable energy to New York but will provide real and tangible economic benefits that will improve the life of North Country New Yorkers.”

New York League of Conservation Voters Policy Director Patrick McClellan said, “As the health of our population and planet continue to suffer the damaging effects of burning fossil fuels, it is critical that we ramp up our large-scale renewable energy capacity. The siting of Brookdale Solar and the 100 megawatts of clean energy it will provide is a big step toward meeting the state’s CLCPA goals and a major win for the environment. We applaud Governor Hochul and ORES Director Houtan Moaveni for their commitment to the climate fight and ensuring New York is a national leader in solar energy production.”

New York State Laborers Union Political Action Committee Executive Director Vincent Albanese said, “We applaud Governor Hochul and the Office of Renewable Energy Siting for thoroughly reviewing and expeditiously permitting New York’s latest renewable energy project - a state-of-the-art solar energy facility in Franklin County. This project will create good union jobs for local construction workers, and allow them to earn solid family-sustaining wages. The developer, AES, has a proven track record of supporting the communities they build in, while providing career-track jobs for local people. The New York State Laborers Union is proud to play an integral role in building New York’s renewable energy future.”

AES Director of Development Josh Baird, “The Brookside Solar Project is another great example of AES’ leadership and commitment to responsibly developing its pipeline of large-scale renewable energy projects in New York. We appreciate the Governor and ORES Staff’s efforts to advance this important project. The issuance of the Siting Permit is a considerable step in moving this project ahead, and we look forward to the many benefits this project will bring to the local community and the State.”

Town of Chateaugay Supervisor Don Bilow said, “The Town of Chateaugay is pleased to support the Brookside Solar Project. We support the State's plan to increase the supply of green energy and lessen our dependence on fossil fuel. These renewable projects are the correct way to begin to balance the effects of greenhouse gases and pollution. I am grateful that some of our leaders take the threat of global warming seriously.”