Office of Renewable Energy Siting Issues First Draft Permit Under Section 94-c

Posted on March 12, 2021

On March 9, 2021, Riverhead Solar 2, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of AES Clean Energy, Inc, was granted the first draft permit for a major renewable energy facility under New York’s new Section 94-c siting process by the Office of Renewable Energy Siting (“ORES”).  The Project is an approximately 36-MW solar powered electric generating facility to be located in the Town of Riverhead, Suffolk County, New York. Jim Muscato and Jessica Ansert Klami serve as permitting counsel for Riverhead Solar on this project.

The Project is the first renewable energy project to transition to the Section 94-c permitting process from the previous permitting process under Public Service Law Article 10.  The Project announced it was electing to transfer under the provisions of the new law and adopted regulations that allow projects that have filed applications under Article 10 to transition to the new siting process.  The Project had previously been deemed complete under Article 10 and under the law, was considered complete under Section 94-c triggering a 60-day requirement for ORES to issue a draft permit.  In addition to the draft permit, ORES announced a public comment period through May 14, 2021 and a virtual public hearing on May 11, 2021.  The draft permit follows the newly adopted uniform standards and conditions for renewable energy permitting under Section 94-c.  This represents a significant milestone for the Riverhead Solar Project and New York State as it shows the State’s commitment to moving forward with the new siting process which has been designed to meet the State’s aggressive renewable energy project targets.