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An excerpt from Freeport Solar Farm Turns On contributed by Larry Grard
A solar farm built in a field in Freeport went online last week, and the people who have hooked up to it don’t necessarily live in town – they reside anywhere within the Central Maine Power Co. service area.
“The homeowners are not connected to the panels,” said Jen Hatch, office manager for ReVision Energy of Portland. “All the electricity goes back to CMP. Credits show up in the farm owners’ electric bill through net metering. They buy the system. Most of them paid between $15,000 and $30,000 to be part of the collective, which owns the solar farm.”
The Freeport solar farm has nine members, or shareholders, including David Marstaller, owner of Maine Idyll Motor Court on U.S. Route 1 in Freeport, not far from the Brunswick town line. Marstaller also collects a yearly fee for hosting the 200 panels behind the motor court, which are visible to people traveling north on Interstate 295. The panels are producing 75 kilowatts of electricity.