Ohio solar project passes federal environmental review

One of the largest projects in the East

Bill Opalka | Apr 29, 2012


A nearly 50-MW solar project in Ohio on a reclaimed strip mine has no significant environmental impact, according to a ruling issued in the Federal Register.

The Rural Utilities Service (RUS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture has issued a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Environmental Assessment (EA) associated with a solar generation project.

The EA evaluates the environmental impacts associated with a potential loan or loan guarantee to Turning Point Solar LLC (Turning Point Solar) for the proposal. RUS is considering funding this proposal.

Turning Point Solar plans to construct a 49.9 MW solar facility, one of the largest east of the Mississippi, 20 miles southeast of Zanesville, Ohio. It will be sited on approximately 771 acres of reclaimed strip-mined land owned by AEP Ohio. The land was mined by the Central Ohio Coal Company between 1969 and 1991, after which time it was reclaimed.

AEP Ohio, a unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), last summer entered into a participation agreement with Turning Point Solar LLC, a joint venture of Agile Energy Inc. and New Harvest Ventures.

The project also has a significant local economic development component. The solar photovoltaic panel maker supplying the project, Spanish-based Isofoton, as part of the project has agreed to base its North American manufacturing facility in Ohio, and projects the facility will employ up to 330 when fully operational. Approximately 250,000 photovoltaic panels will be needed to build the plant.

Construction and commercial operation of the facility will be phased in over three years with construction expected to begin in the summer of 2012 and finishing in 2015.

The facility would interconnect to PJM, once its application process is complete.

The EA determined the project would have no significant impacts to water quality, wetlands, the 100-year floodplain, land use, aesthetics, transportation, or human health and safety. The proposal will have no adverse effects on historic properties and is not likely to affect federally listed threatened and endangered species or designated critical habitat.

The notice was published in the Federal Register on April 27.

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Large-scale solar generation of electricty scams?

Friday April 27, 2012 18:40

Hello Travis,

Thanks for clarification email.

You wrote

[a]nd backwards when you are producing energy from your solar modules ...

Mr Spiller wrote

The Rural Electric Coop's are working on developing the one meter set up that reverses or goes backwards ..

Does this mean that the Rural Electric Coop's are unaware that PNM already has such a meter?

Will PNM's meter, photographed by an Affordable Solar employee on September 1, 2011,

run backwards if more solar generation of electricity is produced than our home consumes?

If PNM power goes out to a home on a sunny day and a solar system is generating more than that home is using will power remain on in the home?

You wrote

[l]et me know if you have any more questions or would like me to come out and give you a solar site evaluation.

CST and Affordable Solar gave quotes and Affordable Solar provided installation information.

Decision was to invest in landscaping before home-sized solar generation of electricity.

Evaluation of garden solar powered water pumping is in progress, however.

Your comments on an evaluation of home PV generation of electricity vs gasoline-powered generator I plan to write would be valuable.



We google ' GE cl 200 runs backward' :-)