Over 40% of Shrewsbury energy comes from renewable sources thanks to the addition of new Solar Plant

August 3, 2018
By Alexandra Phillips

The first row of solar panels at the Shrewsbury plant | Photo by Comunicas Foundation

In 2016, the Shrewsbury government approved a plan for a solar facility to be built in the town. The reasons for doing were to provide long-term benefits to Shrewsbury residents and to the town itself. Solar plants are known to provide residents with a low-cost energy source, and this particular solar plant, with 12,000 panels, could generate between $177,000 and $188,000 each year in revenue for the town.

This past June, after about four months of construction, Shrewsbury Electric and Cable Operations (SELCO) and the Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company (MMWEC) held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the new area of solar power panels, constructed on a landfill in Shrewsbury. The landfill is located at Hartford Turnpike (R20) with Cherry Street.

Aerial view of the 12,000 solar panels at the Shrewsbury plant | Photo courtesy of Google

The ribbon cut ceremony was attended by Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, State Representative Hannah Kane, State Senator Michael Moore, Massachusetts Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs, Matthew Beaton, and Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, John Lebeaux.

Massachusetts is currently the 6th in the entire country for the use of installed solar power. Towns like Shrewsbury, in particular, have a big incentive to switch to solar. Installing solar is relatively cheap in terms of energy costs, and the cost is continuing to decline.

The Shrewsbury Post contacted SELCO to inquire about additional benefits of solar power for Shrewsbury. The new plant “will produce over four million kilowatt hours of clean, renewable energy annually, or enough to power over 400 single family homes.” Not only that, but the new solar facility will allow SELCO to “supply over 40 percent of its energy to customers from renewable and carbon-free sources.”

MMWEC and SELCO were able to come to a special agreement that allowed the solar project to happen. The General Manager of SELCO, Michael Hale, later commented: “without the tremendous support of MMWEC, this project wouldn’t have happened.”

SELCO is also offering incentives for homeowners who want to install residential solar panels at their homes. More information is available at or via phone at 508-841-8500.