Road to 1000 MW: Rose Hill & Plains Road Closed Landfill Solar Projects

Published Date
July 2018

plains road solar farm

Toxic sites that are closed to human activity are sometimes ideal locations for solar panels. In this month’s energy profile, we take a look at the former Rose Hill Regional Landfill and Plains Road Landfill in South Kingstown and tell the story of its transformation into a source of clean energy.

Both sites were used to dispose of waste, some of it toxic. The Environmental Protection Agency identified this site as a federal priority “Superfund Site" for cleanup and sealed it to prevent further contaminants from leaking into the surrounding soil and water.

The towns of Narragansett and South Kingstown and the University of Rhode Island, wanting to repurpose the closed landfill, joined forces and issued a request for solar proposals to the market. Kearsarge Energy, a Boston-based renewable energy developer, submitted the most attractive proposal for the Rosehill Landfill and other closed waste disposal sites on Plains Road in South Kingstown.

Today, Kearsarge Energy is constructing 9.2 MWs of solar arrays on Rose Hill and Plains Road, and will supply the energy to the towns and university. When the projects are completed this summer, the solar arrays will produce enough electricity for over 1,250 houses!

This is a great example of how we can use toxic sites for generating affordable, clean power and reducing our carbon footprint.