Backbone Solar Farm Will Boost Local Economy and Generate Renewable Power to Help Maryland Meet Its Clean Energy Targets
Silver Spring, MD, January 31, 2022 – Competitive Power Ventures (CPV) today announced that it has achieved a major milestone in its plan to construct and operate the 200 MWdc Backbone Solar Farm (CPV Backbone) in western Maryland’s Garrett County. The Maryland Public Service Commission granted CPV a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) for the project on January 11, 2022.
The state’s approval grants CPV permission to construct Backbone Solar on former Vindex/Arch Coal mining sites north of the town of Kitzmiller, MD. The mines served as a major economic contributor to the region for decades. The new solar farm will be sited on approximately 1,170 acres of the property. Construction is expected to begin later this year.
“CPV is committed to driving North America’s transition to a clean, responsible energy future while providing positive benefits for local communities,” said CPV Executive Vice President Sean Finnerty. “We have been working closely with Garrett County and the state throughout the permitting process and look forward to further cooperative efforts as we move ahead.”
CPV Backbone Solar represents an approximately $210 – $290 million private infrastructure investment in the region. It will provide over 150 jobs during the 18-month construction process and bring as much as $2.7 million in annual local tax revenues to benefit Garrett County. The solar farm will generate enough emission-free electricity to power an estimated 30,000 average Maryland homes. It will help the state meet its clean energy targets of 14.5 percent solar energy by 2028 and 50 percent renewable energy by 2030.
Key local groups have expressed their support for the project, and in March 2021, the Garrett County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution to advance the project.
“As Garrett County works to recover from the impact of the pandemic and other economic stress, state approval of this significant energy project is a very timely development,” said Paul Edwards, Chairman of the Garrett County Board of Commissioners. “It is our express desire to see this project under construction as soon as possible.”
“This project provides an array of economic and environmental benefits to the region and offers a host of opportunities for local businesses to benefit,” said Jennifer Walsh, Executive Director of The Greater Cumberland Committee, the leading economic development organization in the region.
CPV plans to do initial site preparation work as soon as permit conditions allow, to expedite construction and the benefits that CPV Backbone will provide the community.
CPV Group LP, a partnership majority owned by OPC Energy Ltd., is uniquely positioned to leverage global technology and financial partnerships to help modernize America’s power generation. Together with our investors, partners, host communities and other key stakeholders, we are driven to improve our energy infrastructure by developing and operating power generation facilities using cutting edge, clean and highly efficient technologies. Headquartered in Silver Spring, MD, with an office in Braintree, MA, the company has ownership interest in 5,500 MW of clean generation across the United States and the company’s Asset Management division manages 7,335 MW of generating facilities in nine states. Our focus on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and sustained track record of success have enabled us to grow into one of North America’s premier energy companies. For more information: www.cpv.com and follow CPV on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Director, Corporate Communications
Competitive Power Ventures