The Adirondack Park Agency Board approved two projects and voted that proposed best management practices to control invasive species on New York State Department of Environmental Conservation administered lands inside the Adirondack Park conformed to the State Land Master Plan at its September 15th, 2022 meeting.
The Agency Board unanimously approved a proposed 20-megawatt solar generation facility to be constructed on Benson Mines, Inc.’s land in the Town of Clifton, St. Lawrence County. The project was submitted by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) as the first Build-Ready Program project in New York State. Under the 2020 Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefit Act, NYSERDA established a Clean Energy Resources Development and Incentives “Build-Ready” Program to encourage expedient siting of renewable energy facilities in an environmentally responsible and cost-effective manner.
The approved BR Benson Mines Solar Facility project will be located on lands along State Route 3, near the intersection with County Route 60/Benson Mines Road in the Town of Clifton. The project will consist of a 20-megawatt alternating current solar photovoltaic array system, sited on a tailings pile from the iron ore mine that was closed in the 1970s, located south of State Route 3. It will connect to the electric grid via the Star Lake Substation located close by, north of State Route 3.
The APA board found that construction and operation of the project is consistent with New York State energy policies, including the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act targets, the long-range energy planning objectives and strategies contained in the 2015 State Energy Plan, and the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, the Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefit Act, and related policies. Once constructed, the facility is expected to contribute to New York State’s renewable energy goals and will safely generate enough clean, renewable electricity to power over 4,000 New York households.
The permit conditions require that trees will also be retained between State Route 3 and the solar array to provide visual screening.
The Board also voted to determine that proposed Inter-Agency Guidelines for Best Management Practices to Control Invasive Species on Department of Environmental Conservation Administered Lands of the Adirondack Park conformed to the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan. The goal of these guidelines is to enhance protection of and to efficiently restore native ecological communities on DEC-administered lands through early detection and rapid response efforts that address existing or newly identified invasive species infestations. In addition, the guidelines will streamline management of established invasive species populations which cause or may cause negative impacts to the immediate and surrounding ecosystems.
To learn more about other informational presentations and actions undertaken by the Agency Board at the September meeting watch the recorded webcast by clicking Archived Videos of Agency Meetings found under News & Activities on the APA website.
To review and download meeting materials related to Agency Board actions click the Archive of Agency Meeting Materials also found under News & Activities on the APA website.