Brightfields and Brown Fields

Jen Fontana
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Solar FutureWhile brightfield projects benefit from government involvement, developers should be aware that they must obtain permits from multiple agencies. If the area is a Superfund site, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will need to approve the project. As a result, it is imperative for developers to hire a consulting firm that is experienced in the permitting process for brownfield sites. The approval process can be lengthy and expensive. This article will outline the steps involved in obtaining the permits needed for brownfield development.

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While developing a brightfield project can be expensive, it’s often worth the effort. Proper research and development will ensure the project is feasible and will be profitable. While the EPA maintains a comprehensive brownfields list, many developers must wait for years before they can begin building. Depending on the location, there may be additional records that the landlords have that relate to the site. It’s essential to conduct an in-depth investigation to determine the history of the site and determine whether there are long-term obligations associated with it.

In addition to evaluating the site, developers must also take time to understand the history, current condition, and construction challenges of the site. In other words, a developer must be able to assess the true scope, costs, timeline, and risks of a brightfield before they commit to the project. Without proper knowledge, a developer may end up terminating the project because the project economics are not suitable. So, the smartest approach is to seek professional help and advice from subject matter experts.

Solar brightfields can be built to meet the needs of solar and wind power customers. A solar brightfield can be large enough to serve the energy needs of neighboring communities. The energy it produces will be used to power data centers, factories, and other facilities. Once a solar project is up and running, it’ll become a significant part of the community, generating tax revenue, and benefiting the surrounding community. The project is a win-win-win situation for all stakeholders.

Check out our Partner site, Electric City News, for more details.