Blackrock-owned developer DSD buys solar-plus-storage development with 88MWh BESS in Massachusetts

By Cameron Murray
A DSD project in Glenville, Schenectady County, New York, Image: DSD Renewables.

DSD Renewables, a solar PV and energy storage developer owned by Blackrock Real Assets, has acquired a six-site community solar-plus-storage greenfield project portfolio with 45 MW of solar and 88 MWh of battery energy storage systems (BESS) in Massachussets, USA.

The seller is solar developer Borrego and construction is set to begin in 2023. 

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The portfolio is part of the state’s Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) Program which was launched in 2018 to incentivise solar development, with its long-term state-wide deployment target doubled in April 2020 to 3.2GW.

Under it, utilities pay their customers for solar production on a monthly basis; for 10 years for residential systems and 20 years for large commercial solar projects like DSD’s. 

A portion of the sites’ offtake will be for community solar – individual households – and low-income subscribers will be eligible to receive electricity bill credits.

The SMART program includes extra savings or ‘adders’ for customers who install battery storage systems alongside their solar no matter how small, that being the only ‘adder’ without a minimum size. 

Data centre services provider Markley Group will be one of the commercial subscriber anchor tenants of the sites.

All six are all solar-plus-storage and are in Acushnet (2), Freetown (2), Plymouth and Wareham. The smallest is 1.5MW solar/3.37MWh storage and the largest is 12.9MW/26.6MWh. 

“Partnering with such a stable and efficient capital provider like DSD has enabled this portfolio to achieve its full potential,” says Borrego Vice President of Project Finance Adam Feldman.

“We’re accelerating community solar adoption for those who can benefit most while instituting a clean energy future for more residents and businesses of Massachusetts.” 

Borrego bills itself as a developer, designer, installer and operator of commercial solar. DSD Renewables is today primarily an investor in solar projects, originally a start-up within GE but acquired by BlackRock Real Assets in 2020.

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