Building solar farms on closed landfills in Massachusetts

As the list directly below demonstrates, over the past decade more than 80 communities in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts have successfully turned their closed brownfield landfills into green energy producing “bright fields.”

  • Acton Landfill = 1.59 megawatt solar array on 17.5 acres (2013)
  • Adams Landfill = 1.1 megawatt solar array on 5 acres (2013)
  • Agawam: Grasso Landfill = 1.98 megawatt solar array on 9.5 acres (2013)
  • Amesbury: Hunt Road Landfill = 5.96 megawatt solar array on 28.3 acres (2017)
  • Amesbury: Titcomb Pit Landfill = 4.6 megawatt solar array on 14.5 acres (2020)
  • Aquinnah Landfill = 0.048 megawatt solar array on 0.3 acres (2012)
  • Ashland Landfill = 0.907 megawatt solar array on 3.1 acres (2018)
  • Ayer Sanitary Landfill = 0.92 megawatt solar array on 4.9 acres (2020)
  • Barnstable Municipal Landfill = 4.0 megawatt solar array on 52 acres (2014)
  • Bellingham Sanitary Landfill = 4.2 megawatt solar array on 13.5 acres (2016)
  • Berkley Landfill = 3.66 megawatt solar array on 12 acres (2017)
  • Beverly Landfill = 5 megawatt solar array on 12 acres (2020) – see photo below
  • Billerica: Shaffer Landfill = 5.99 megawatt solar array on 63 acres (2014)
  • Boxford Landfill = 0.912 megawatt solar array on 3.2 acres (2017)
  • Braintree Landfill = 1.263 megawatt solar array on 22 acres (2015)
  • Brewster Landfill = 1.2 megawatt solar array on 16 acres (2014)
  • Bridgewater: Chuckran Corp. Landfill = 1.8 megawatt solar array on 12 acres (2017)
  • Brockton Landfill = 4.4 megawatt solar array on 11 acres (2017)
  • Brookfield Landfill = 0.575 megawatt solar array on 15.7 acres (2013)
  • Canton Landfill = 5.6 megawatt solar array on 15 acres (2012)
  • Carver: Ravenbrook Fams Landfill = 6.0 megawatt solar array on 14 acres (2013)
  • Chatham Landfill = 1.9 megawatt solar array on 16.5 acres (2014)
  • Chelmsford Landfill = 1.56 megawatt solar array on 6.8 acres (2020)
  • Chicopee Elks Landfill = 2.3 megawatt solar array on 9.6 acres (2015)
  • Chilmark Landfill = 0.099 megawatt solar array on 6 acres (2014)
  • Cohasset: Cedar Street Landfill = 0.56 megawatt solar array on 1.7 acres (2017)
  • Concord Landfill = 1.75 megawatt solar array on 4.1 acres (2014)
  • Dartmouth: Russels Mills Landfill = 1.4 megawatt solar array on 6.3 acres (2013)
  • Dennis Landfill = 6.0 megawatt solar array on 25 acres (2014)
  • Dover Landfill = 1.6 megawatt solar array on 6.5 acres (2017)
  • Duxbury Landfill = 0.5 megawatt solar array on 12 acres (2014)
  • East Bridgewater Landfill = 3.2 megawatt solar array on 50 acre site (2013)
  • Eastham Landfill = 0.63 megawatt solar array on 10.4 acres (2014)
  • Easthampton: Oliver Street Landfill = 2.3 megawatt solar array on 11 acres (2012)
  • Easton Landfill = 1.86 megawatt solar array on 20 acres (2014)
  • Fairhaven Sanitary Landfill = 0.578 megawatt solar array on site of less than 3 acres (2013)
  • Falmouth Landfill = 4.5 megawatt solar array on 24.8 acres (2017)
  • Greenfield: Wisdom Way Landfill= 2.0 megawatt solar array on 23 acres (2012)
  • Groton Landfill = 2.93 megawatt solar array on 8 acres (2016)
  • Hamilton Landfill = 0.93 megawatt solar array on 3.1 acres (2020)
  • Harwich Municipal Landfill = 4.0 megawatt solar array on 28 acres (2014)
  • Haverhill Old Groveland Landfill = 3.4 megawatt solar array on 7.8 acres (2020)
  • Hudson: Hudson-Stow Landfill = 5.0 megawatt solar array on 29 acres (2017) – see photo above
  • Lancaster Landfill = 0.5 megawatt solar array on 2.78 acre gravel pit next to landfill 2013)
  • Lee: Schweitzer-Mauduit Capped Landfill = 2.7 megawatt solar array on 7 acres (2017)
  • Lenox: Willow Creek Road Landfill = 0.7488 megawatt solar array on 3 acres (2017)
  • Lowell: Westford Street Landfill = 1.5 megawatt solar array on 42 acres (2014)
  • Ludlow Landfill = 2.6 megawatt solar array on 10 acres (2013)
  • Marshfield: Sylvester Ray Construction & Demolition Debris Landfill = 3.99 megawatt solar array on 27 acres (2013)
  • Mashpee Landfill = 1.83 megawatt solar array on 22 acres (2014)
  • Maynard Landfill = 1.2 megawatt solar array on 4.8 acres (2014)
  • Methuen Landfill = 1.287 megawatt solar array on 4.7 acres (2013)
  • Montague: Sandy Lane Landfill = 5.92 megawatt solar array on 19.5 acres (2018)
  • Needham Sanitary Landfill = 3.7 megawatt solar array on 75.4 acres (2016)
  • Newton: Rumford Avenue Landfill = 2.137 megawatt solar array on 9 acres (2017)
  • Norfolk Landfill (Phase 1) = 0.55 megawatt solar array on 1.58 acres (2012)
  • Norfolk Landfill (Phase 2) = 1.05 megawatt solar array on 3.5 acres (2012)
  • North Adams: E Street Landfill = 3.6 megawatt solar array on 11.7 acres (2015)
  • Northampton Landfill = 3.12 megawatt solar array on 23.3 acres (2017)
  • Norton Landfill = 1.9 megawatt solar array on 8.5 acres (2016)
  • Orleans Sanitary Landfill = 0.574 megawatt solar array on 3.4 acres (2015)
  • Palmer: Emery Street Landfill = 5.0 megawatt solar array on 27 acres (2016)
  • Pembroke Landfill = 2.7 megawatt solar array on 9 acres (2017)
  • Pittsfield Municipal Landfill = 2.91 megawatt solar array on 12 acres (2017)
  • Plainville Landfill = 6.0 megawatt solar array on 30 acres (2017)
  • Randolph: BFI Landfill = 4.8 megawatt solar array on 30 acres (2017)
  • Raynham Municipal Landfill = 3.0 megawatt solar array on 24.5 acres (2018)
  • Rehoboth Landfill = 2.49 megawatt solar array on 9 acres (2015)
  • Rockland: Beech Street Landfill = 2.6 megawatt solar array on 7.5 acres (2013)
  • Saugus: Main Street Landfill = 1.66 megawatt solar array on 4 acres (2017)
  • Scituate Landfill = 3.0 megawatt solar array on 29 acre site (2013)- see photo below
  • Shirley Landfill = 1.4 megawatt solar array on 3 acres (2017)
  • Shrewsbury Landfill = 3.0 megawatt solar array on 11.5 acres (2018)
  • Springfield: Cottage Street Landfill = 3.9 megawatt solar array on 53 acres (2014)
  • Springfield: Delta Hills Landfill = 2.6 megawatt solar array on 8 acres (2015)
  • Stockbridge Landfill = 0.9 megawatt solar array on 2.6 acres (2018)
  • Stoughton Landfill = 1.2 megawatt solar array on a 3.25 acres (2021)
  • Sudbury: Sand Hill Landfill = 1.512 megawatt solar array on 7 acres (2013)
  • Tewksbury: Rocco Landfill = 3.0 megawatt solar array on an 11 acres = (2022)
  • Tisbury Landfill = 1.2 megawatt solar array on 15 acres (2014)
  • Walpole: Bird Inc. Landfill = 2.4 megawatt solar array on 8.5 acres (2017)
  • Warren: South Street Landfill = 1.34 megawatt solar array on 4.9 acres (2017)
  • Webster Landfill = 1.8 megawatt solar array on 15 acres (2016)
  • Wellfleet Landfill = 0.905 megawatt solar array on a 7.4 acres = (2021)
  • Westfield: Twiss Street Landfill= 2.3 megawatt solar array on 8.5 acres (2015)
  • Weston Landfill =2.27 megawatt solar array on 9.9 acres (2016)
  • Westport Landfill = 0.62 megawatt solar array on 2 acres (2019)
  • West Tisbury Landfill = 0.884 megawatt solar array on 9 acres (2014)
  • Wilbraham Landfill = 0.927 megawatt solar array on 3.7 acres (2016)
  • Williamstown Phase I Landfill= 1.902 megawatt solar array on 18.8 acres (2017)
  • Winchenden Landfill = 2.725 megawatt solar array on a site abutting the landfill (2018)
  • Woburn Landfill = 3.4 megawatt solar array on 11 acres (2017)
  • Worcester: Greenwood Street Landfill = 5.6 megawatt solar array on 26 acres (2017)
Scituate Landfill Solar Farm – Source: aesdistributedenergy.com/simply-dummy-text/

Also approved for other closed landfills in Dalton, Foxboro, Greenfield, Haverhill, Newbury, Newburyport, Provincetown, Somerset, Springfield, and Ware.

Beverly, MA Landfill Solar Farm – Source: beverlyma.gov

The following map depicts the statewide distribution of this tremendous adaptive reuse effort taking place in The Bay State. As can be seen, solar farms have predominantly been installed at closed landfills in suburban Boston, as well as the Springfield, Pittsfield, New Bedford, Lowell-Lawrence, Martha’s Vineyard, Cape Cod regions. Areas where adaptive reuse of closed landfills into solar farms are less common include Worcester, Fall River, Amherst, Fitchburg-Leominster, and on Nantucket.

The numerous benefits of such an effort include, but are not limited to:

  • Productive reuse brownfield sites
  • Income stream to the community from the solar farm lease
  • Reduce reliance on fossil fuels
  • Chance to contribute towards lowering C02 levels in the atmosphere
  • Green energy option available for residents
  • Demonstration of successful adaptive reuse project
  • Reduce pressure of locating solar farms on productive agricultural land
  • Improve the visual aesthetics of the closed landfill

Congratulations to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the 80+ communities involved in this successful green energy program. Other states and communities should take note of The Bay State’s success and consider similar efforts on their closed landfill spaces. Peace!

SOURCES:

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