The Brookside Solar Project is a 100 megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic electric generating facility proposed to be located in Franklin County, New York (the “Project”). The Project will span approximately 1,100 acres and plans to connect to Chateaugay substation. The Project is anticipated to positively impact both the environment and the local economy by reducing carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 131,000 metric tons each year – the equivalent of taking an estimated 28,000 cars off the road – and producing significant tax revenue and other economic benefits for the area.
|Operational Capacity||100 MW|
|Location||Franklin County, New York|
|Expected COD||December 31, 2023|
|Carbon Dioxide Emissions Reduced||~131,000 metric tons annually|
|DPS Case #||20-F-0023|
|Project Contact Informationfirstname.lastname@example.org, 877-618-1763|
Under the New York State Public Service Law (PSL), major electric generating facilities with a capacity of 25 MW or greater, such as the Project, are subject to certification under PSL Article 10. The Article 10 law and accompanying regulations lay out a single unified process by which major facilities can obtain a certificate of environmental compatibility and public need (CECPN) from the New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment (Siting Board).
The first step in Article 10 is the filing of the Public Involvement Program (PIP) plan. The PIP plan starts the Article 10 proceeding for a particular applicant and describes the applicant’s plans for outreach and activities that encourage robust and effective public participation and input throughout the entire Article 10 process. Brookside Solar, LLC filed its PIP on January 15, 2020. In compliance with the Article 10 regulations, Brookside Solar’s PIP outlines its plans for consultation with agencies and other stakeholders; open houses and other means for gathering public input; and information about its website and other means for disseminating information to and collecting information from interested parties. Through this process, stakeholder concerns, interests, local knowledge, and recommendations will be evaluated, addressed and considered by Brookside Solar and the Siting Board.
No sooner than 150 days after submitting the PIP plan, an applicant may submit its Preliminary Scoping Statement (PSS). The PSS provides details about the facility, the applicant, and the locality, such as identification of required permits, applicable laws and regulations, compatibility of the project with state energy policy and goals, and the scope of an environmental impact analysis, including, but not limited to: the project’s environmental setting, potential environmental and health impacts, descriptions of studies to be prepared for the Project and the contents of the application, descriptions of how to avoid and/or mitigate potential impacts, evaluation of alternative locations, and the demographic, economic, and physical attributes of the host community. When the PSS is filed, Brookside Solar will submit a fee equal to $350 per proposed MW for intervenor funding.
Within 21 days after the PSS is filed, any person, agency, or municipality may submit comments on the PSS by serving such comments on the Applicant and filing a copy with the Secretary to the Siting Board. Comments must reference Case Number 20-F-0023 and may be submitted in writing to Hon. Michelle L. Phillips, Secretary to the Siting Board, New York State Public Service Commission, Agency Building 3, Albany, NY 12223-1350 or electronically to secretary@ dps.ny.gov. After the comment period, the applicant and parties to the proceeding may enter into stipulation proceedings to reach agreement on the applicant’s proposed scope of studies or methodology as discussed in the PSS.
As part of the Article 10 process, the Project will undergo extensive environmental and public health impact analyses. When the application is filed, Brookside Solar will submit a fee equal to $1,000 per proposed MW for intervenor funding. The Article 10 application review process affords stakeholders and other interested parties ample opportunities to participate and ask questions and share comments, concerns, and knowledge with the Siting Board, including participation in and presentation of evidence at administrative hearings, all of which will be considered by the Siting Board in deciding whether to approve the Project. Notices of public comment periods, open houses and other events, and other opportunities to weigh in on the Project will be posted on the Project’s website as they are scheduled. Information about the name and location of libraries that will serve as local document repositories will also be posted on the Project’s website once established.
The Project will provide two separate stages of intervenor funding when the preliminary scoping statement and the application are filed, respectively. These funds are provided by Article 10 applicants to offset costs to participate in Article 10 for municipal and local parties. Individuals can learn more about intervenor funding and how to apply on the DPS website under “Guides,” which is available at www.dps.ny.gov/SitingBoard.
Approximately three weeks after the PSS is filed, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) will issue a notice of availability of pre-application intervenor funds, which will provide a schedule and instructions on how interested parties may apply for such funds. Requests for intervenor funds are due within 30 days of issuance of the notice. A pre-application meeting will also be convened to consider funding requests no less than 45 but no more than 60 days after filing of the PSS.
Once the application is deemed complete by the Siting Board, the ALJ will schedule the public statement hearing for comments on the application and pre-hearing conference to identify intervenors, award intervenor funds to assist parties in participating in the application review process, identify issues for the hearing, and establish a case schedule.
Any interested person may also file a written request with the Secretary to receive copies of all notices concerning the Project. Additional information can be found on the Siting Board’s website located at www.dps.ny.gov/SitingBoard. Documents filed in this proceeding may also be viewed online at the Public Service Commission’s (“PSC”) website located at www.dps.ny.gov by clicking “Search” on the homepage and then entering Case Number 20-F-0023 in the field “Search by Case Number.” Interested parties may also subscribe to the service list or request party status by accessing this proceeding through the PSC’s website.