Skip to main content
  • Our products Our products Our products
  • Sustainability Sustainability Sustainability
  • Careers Careers Careers
  • Investors Investors Investors
  • Meet AES Meet AES Meet AES
  • My AES
    Choose your location
    EN
    Choose location

    AES Global

    AES Local

    Andes Argentina Brasil Bulgaria Chile Colombia Dominicana El Salvador India Indiana México Miami Valley Lighting Ohio Panama Puerto Rico Vietnam
    Search
    Search AES

    Hemlock Ridge

    Hemlock Ridge Solar header Hemlock Ridge Solar

    *Project Update*

    On September 22, 2022, Hemlock Ridge Solar was issued a Siting Permit by ORES, marking one of the final milestones in the 94-c permitting process.

    The issuance of this permit signifies ORES' final decision to approve the Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c permit application, and authorize AES to develop, design, construct, operate, maintain, and decommission the Hemlock Ridge Solar project, in accordance with the specifications laid out in the Siting Permit.

    94-c proceeding materials for Hemlock Ridge Solar can be found on the DMM under DMM Matter Number 21-00748 and are available in the 'Project resources' section below.

    Please reach out to AES at 866-757-7697 or hemlockridgesolar@aes.com with any questions!

    Project description

    Hemlock Ridge Solar is a proposed 200 MW-AC solar project located in the Towns of Barre and Shelby in central Orleans County, along Crane Road, Townline Road, and Burns Road. The proposed project is located about 5 miles southeast of Medina, New York. Hemlock Ridge Solar is committed to the responsible development of renewable energy as a catalyst for long-term community benefit. The project is anticipated to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 282,000 metric tons each year – the equivalent of powering over 36,000 homes' electricity use per year. Additionally, the project will contribute to the local economy by producing significant tax revenue and other economic benefits for the area.

    The Hemlock Ridge Solar project was previously developed by solar developer Community Energy. In December 2021, AES acquired Community Energy, and along with it, the Hemlock Ridge Solar project. To learn more about the acquisition, click here. Prior to June 30, 2021, Hemlock Ridge Solar was known as 'Orleans Solar'. This name change is documented here.

    Hemlock Ridge Facility map

    Project impacts

    Environmental studies have been conducted to help design and position the solar project in a way that avoids and minimizes impacts to wetlands, wildlife, and cultural resources. Through thoughtful and sensitive design, the Hemlock Ridge Solar project seeks to be a good neighbor and a contributing member of the business and farming community.

    Solar equipment is a proven and safe technology in applications from fields to rooftops of homes, schools, and businesses. The project will provide a significant economic stimulus to the area during construction by providing jobs and local contracts for goods and services, and significant long-term economic benefits through lease revenue to local landowners and tax revenue to the community.

    The facility is not a permanent structure and essentially provides a form of preservation for agricultural land by maintaining permeable land surface and improving soil quality over the project life by allowing the soil to effectively rest and installing a high-quality ground cover seed mix. Setbacks, fencing, and landscape buffering enable solar projects to blend comfortably into the community.

    When a solar project reaches the end of its project life, the project is responsible for executing the approved Decommissioning Plan, including abiding by all local and state decommissioning requirements. This includes the removal, recycling, and disposal of all solar arrays, racking, equipment, and other structures associated with the project, as applicable. The land surface within the project area will be sensibly restored to pre-project conditions to allow a return to agricultural use or other uses consistent with the land-use policies at the time.

    rural NY

    Community benefits

    Long-term Tax Revenue: The Hemlock Ridge Solar project will provide tax revenues to the county and school district with no additional burden on municipal services. The project will pay hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxes over the life of the project. Unlike residential or commercial development, this tax revenue will not create any material burden on County infrastructure or expenses for schools, water, sewer, emergency services, etc. The land hosting the solar project will no longer be taxed at the lower rate provided for agricultural land and will generate many times more in taxes compared to current land use.

    Full-Time Operations and Maintenance Jobs: The Hemlock Ridge Solar project is expected to create 4 full-time equivalent operations and maintenance jobs.

    Construction Jobs and Local Economic Stimulus During Construction: The Hemlock Ridge Solar project will create approximately 170 jobs to support the 6-12 month construction period. Local construction employment is expected to primarily benefit those in the construction trades in Orleans County and the surrounding regional labor market, including equipment operators, truck drivers, laborers, landscapers and electricians. The project construction period will also stimulate spending at local hotels, restaurants, shops, entertainment and tourism.

    94-c permitting process
    Overview

    The Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefit Act (the “Act”) was passed in April 2020 as part of the final state budget. The Act added a new section 94-c to the Executive Law, titled Major Renewable Energy Development ("Section 94-c”, "94-c", or "the 94-c permitting process"), which established a review process with uniform permit standards for New York State renewable energy projects in place of the procedures set forth in Article 10 of the Public Service Law (“Article 10").

    Section 94-c established the Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES) within the NYS Department of State to provide a single forum for the environmental review and permitting of proposed major renewable energy facilities. This includes renewable energy systems with a nameplate generating capacity of 25 MW or more, co-located energy storage systems, and electric transmission facilities less than 10 miles in length. The final Section 94-c regulations were issued on March 3, 2021 and can be viewed here.

    Article 10 applications that had already received a completeness determination are deemed complete under the new 94-c process, while projects currently undergoing the Article 10 siting process can choose to either remain in Article 10 or opt-in to 94-c. The 94-c regulations issued by ORES include an expedited permitting process to account for matters and issues already presented and resolved in the alternate Article 10 proceedings.

    Prior to submitting a 94-c permit application, Applicants are required to consult with the local agencies and stakeholders of the community(ies) in which the proposed project will be located. ORES also requires that state agencies (e.g. NY DEC) are consulted on wetland and stream delineations, threatened and endangered species, and archeological and cultural resources, if appropriate. Agency consultations should take place at the earliest point possible in the Applicant’s process. 

    Following consultations with impacted agencies, 94-c Applicants must hold at least one meeting for community members. Two Virtual Community Meetings were held for Hemlock Ridge Solar - on December 21, 2020, and May 19, 2021. Materials from these meetings can be found in the 'Community Engagement Events' section below. Outside of the 94-c public comment period and requirements, Hemlock Ridge Solar is committed to ongoing stakeholder and community engagement.

     From the date of its receipt of a permit application, ORES has 60 days to make a completeness determination. After a completeness determination, draft permit conditions will be issued by ORES for public comment. Within the comment period, the host municipalities must submit a statement indicating whether the proposed renewable energy facility complies with applicable local laws. ORES must issue a final decision on the siting permit within one year of the date on which the application is deemed complete. See below for a full diagram of the 94-c process, from pre-application activities through the start of construction.

     

    This is a diagram of the 94-c process

     

    Hemlock Ridge Solar permitting milestones

    All permit application materials can be found on the New York State Department of Public Service’s Document Matter Manager (DMM) system, under DMM Matter Number 21-00748, and are also available below in the section titled 'Project resources'.

    • On September 22, 2022, ORES made a final permit decision for Hemlock Ridge Solar, and the project was issued a Siting Permit

    • On August 19, 2022, ORES issued its Issues Determination for the Hemlock Ridge Solar project.

    • On June 29, 2022 at 5:00pm, the 94-c required public comment hearing was held at Barre Town Hall. The transcript from the hearing can be viewed here

    • On April 26, 2022, Hemlock Ridge Solar was issued a draft siting permit, and a combined notice outlining the next steps and deadlines in the permitting process, by ORES. 

    • On March 11, 2022 Hemlock Ridge Solar received a Notice of Complete Application from ORES

    • On January 14, 2022 and March 10, 2022, Hemlock Ridge Solar filed supplemental information to the 94-c permit application, in response to the Notice of Incomplete Application. 

    • On September 20, 2021, Hemlock Ridge Solar received a Notice of Incomplete Application from ORES. 

    • On July 20, 2021, Hemlock Ridge Solar filed its 94-c permit application with ORES. The Notice of Application Filing and Availability of Local Agency Account Funding reflects this project milestone. 

    • On February 4, 2021, Hemlock Ridge Solar filed a letter with the Secretary to the NYS Public Service Commission (PSC) noticing its election to be subject to Executive Law Section 94-c and stating its intent to file a Transfer Application with the Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES). The Hemlock Ridge Solar materials filed under the Article 10 process can be found here, as Article 10 DMM Case # 20-F-0037.

    How to receive notices

    Join the  Hemlock Ridge Solar master stakeholder list

    Joining the Master Stakeholder List maintained by AES enables you to receive mailings of the 94-c required notices. You can join this list by filling out the 'Stay Updated' webform at the bottom of this page, by calling 866-757-7697, or by emailing hemlockridgesolar@aes.com.

     

    Subscribe to the service list

    If you would like to monitor the proceedings of the Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c permitting process, you can do so without the formal commitment of becoming a party in the proceeding. By subscribing to the service list of a case (Hemlock Ridge Solar: Matter Number 21-00748), you will receive an e-mail with a direct link to the documents issued by the Public Service Commission PSC), such as orders, notices, and rulings. If you are unable or unwilling to receive electronic notification, you will receive hard copies of Commission-issued documents by regular mail.

    If you are a registered user of the NYS Public Service Commission's Document and Matter Management (DMM) System, you may submit your service list subscription by clicking here. Registration saves time and allows you to see and manage all of your service and party list subscriptions.

    If you do not wish to register on the PSC's DMM System, you can download the Request for Service List form here. Please follow the instructions on the form.

     

    Request party status

    Generally, parties commit to contribute to the development of a complete record in a proceeding by conducting discovery, submitting testimony, briefs, or other formal written comments, and/or participating in evidentiary hearings, procedural conferences and other formal events conducted in the case. (Non-parties participate in PSC proceedings by filing informal comments, such as letters, in contrast to the formal comments filed by parties in response to Commission notices.)

    For some PSC proceedings, including rate cases, a person need not be a party to petition for rehearing of the Commission's final decision; however, in some other proceedings, only those who were parties in the case may petition for rehearing. The right to challenge a PSC decision in New York State Court may also be limited to those who were parties to the PSC proceeding.

    Under Commission rules, 16 NYCRR 4.3, you must seek permission to intervene as a party from the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), if one is assigned to the case, or from the Secretary if there is no ALJ assigned. The standard for allowing intervention is whether your participation is likely to contribute to the development of a complete record or is otherwise fair and in the public interest; whether other parties are unfairly prejudiced is also considered.

    If you are a registered user of the NYS Public Service Commission's Document and Matter Management (DMM) System, you may submit your request for party status by clicking here. Registration saves time and allows you to see and manage all of your service and party list subscriptions.

    If you do not wish to register on the PSC's DMM System, you can download the Request for Party Status form here. Please follow the instructions on the form.

    When you submit the request for party status here, you will be provisionally added to the party list, subject to the right of other parties to object and subject to the final determination of the ALJ or Secretary. You will be required to mail your request to anyone on the party list who cannot receive e-mail service.

    Availability of local agency account funds

    Intervenor funding is money that Applicants make available to qualified, locally affected parties and municipalities to offset certain expenses they incur in participating in the state permitting process. These funds are meant to encourage early and effective public involvement in project development and permitting.

    With the filing of its 94-c application on July 20, 2021, Hemlock Ridge Solar submitted the required local agency account fee of $200,000. These funds can be sought by local community intervenors and host towns. 75% of funds are reserved for municipalities.

    Any local agency or potential community intervenor seeking funding must submit a request for initial funding within 30 days of the date of application filing. The deadline for requesting local agency account funds was 4:30 p.m. EST on August 19, 2021.

    Requests for local agency account funds can be made via:

    The ORES Request For Local Agency Account Funding form available in the Resources section of the ORES website

    Or by email to:

    general@ores.ny.gov 

    Or by mail to: 

    Attention: Request for Local Agency Account Funding
    Office of Renewable Energy Siting
    Empire State Plaza
    240 State Street
    P-1 South, J Dock 
    Albany, NY 12242

    Further details regarding requests for local agency account funding can be found in the Notice of Application Filing and Availability of Local Agency Account Funding.

    If you have questions regarding the intervenor process, please contact the ORES office.

    Hemlock Ridge Solar document repositories

    In addition to being viewable on this project website (see 'Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c Application', below) and the project Document Matter Master on the DPS website, the Hemlock Ridge Solar permit application is available for viewing in print at the following locations, during regular operating hours:

    • Town of Barre Town Hall: 14317 W Barre Road, Albion, NY 14411

    • Town of Shelby Town Hall: 4062 Salt Works Road, Medina, NY 14103

     

    Accessing resources via the ORES website

    To learn more about the 94-c permitting process, please visit the Office of Renewable Energy Siting website at https://ores.ny.gov/.

    Contact ORES

    To submit any questions or comments regarding the 94-c permitting process, reach out to ORES by phone, email, written letter, or via this contact form on the ORES website (https://ores.ny.gov/)

    • (518) 473-4590

    • general@ores.ny.gov

    • Mailing Information (letters and envelopes):

    Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES)
    c/o: OGS Mailroom
    Empire State Plaza
    240 State Street
    P-1 South, J Dock
    Albany, N.Y. 12242

    Community engagement events

    All public meetings will be announced at least 14 days prior to the scheduled event and posted on the project website.

    Project resources

     

    Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c application docket link (Matter Master # 21-00748)

    All filings in the Hemlock Ridge 94-c proceedings can be viewed at the docket linked above.

     

    Siting Permit

    September 22, 2022 (issued by ORES)

     

    Issues Determination

    August 19, 2022 (issued by ORES)

     

    Transcript of 94-c Public Comment Hearing

    June 29, 2022 (issued by ORES)

     

    Notice of Availability of Draft Permit Conditions, Public Comment Period and Public Hearining, and Commencement of Issues Determination Procedure (Combined Notice)

    April 26, 2022 (issued by ORES)

     

    Draft Siting Permit

    April 26, 2022 (issued by ORES)

     

    Notice of Complete Application

    March 11, 2022 (issued by ORES)

     

    Second Supplement to 94-c Application (Cover Letter, Supplement)

    March 10, 2022 (submitted by Hemlock Ridge Solar)

     

    First Supplement to 94-c Application/'Response to NOIA'  (supplement materials linked below)

    January 14, 2022 (submitted by Hemlock Ridge Solar)

     

    Notice of Incomplete Application (NOIA)

    September 20, 2021 (issued by ORES)

     

    Notice of Application Filing and Availability of Local Agency Account Funding

    July 20, 2021 (issued by ORES)

     

    94-c Application (application materials linked below)

    July 20, 2021 (submitted by Hemlock Ridge Solar)

     

    3-day Notice of Intent to File a 94-c Application

    June 30, 2021 (submitted by Hemlock Ridge Solar)

     

    60-Day Notice of Intent to File a 94-c Application

    March 30, 2021 (submitted by Hemlock Ridge Solar, formerly known as 'Orleans Solar')

     

    Notice of Election and Transfer to 94-c

    February 4, 2021 (submitted by Hemlock Ridge Solar, formerly known as 'Orleans Solar')

    Hemlock Ridge Solar Supplement/Response to NOIA
    Supplement (Exhibits, Figures & Appendices)

    This section is in progress - direct links are being added to each of the items below. In the meantime, please visit DMM Matter Number 21-00748 to review these items.

    EXHIBIT 1 General Requirements – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 2 Overview and Public Involvement – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 3 Location of Facilities and Surrounding Land Use – Rev. 1

    Figure S3-6:Zoning Districts 

    Figure S3-11: Facility Site on Aerial Overlays

    Appendix 3-C: Study Area Zoning Use Tables

    Figure S4-1: Property Boundaries

    Appendix 5-A: Site Plan Drawings – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 6 Public Health, Safety and Security – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 7 Noise and Vibration – Rev. 1

    Figure S7-1: Foliage On Sound Contours and Sensitive Receptors

    Figure S7-2: Foliage Off Sound Contours and Sensitive Receptors

    Figure S7-3: Foliage On Substation Sound Contours and Sensitive Receptors

    Figure S7-4: Foliage Off Substation Sound Contours and Sensitive Receptors

    Appendix 7-A: Pre-Construction Noise Impact Assessment – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 8 Visual Impacts – Rev. 1

    Appendix 8-D: Visual Impact Assessment Supplement

    EXHIBIT 9 Cultural Resources – Rev. -1

    Appendix 9-E: Cultural Resources Agency/Stakeholder Correspondence - CONFIDENTIAL/REDACTED – Rev. 1

    Appendix 9-F: Archaeological Site Avoidance and Preservation Plan- CONFIDENTIAL/REDACTED

    Appendix 9-G: Preliminary Cultural Resources Avoidance, Minimization and Mitigation Plan - CONFIDENTIAL/REDACTED

    EXHIBIT 11 Terrestrial Ecology – Rev. 1

    Appendix 11-A: Plant and Wildlife Species List – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 12 NYS Threatened or Endangered Species – Rev. 1

    Appendix 12-F: Net Conservation Benefit Plan- CONFIDENTIAL/REDACTED – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 13 Water Resources and Aquatic Ecology- CONFIDENTIAL/REDACTED – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 14 Wetlands – Rev. 1

    Figure S14-1: Delineated Wetlands and Streams

    Appendix 14-C: Wetland Function and Value Assessment Forms

    EXHIBIT 15 Agricultural Resources – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 16 Effect on Transportation – Rev. 1

    Appendix 16-A: Route Evaluation Study – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 17 Consistency with Energy Planning Objectives – Rev. 1

    Appendix 19-A: NYSDEC EJ Correspondence

    EXHIBIT 23 Site Restoration and Decommissioning – Rev. 1

    Appendix 23-A: Decommissioning and Site Restoration Plan – Rev. 1

    EXHIBIT 24 Local Laws and Ordinances – Rev. 1

    Figure S24-1: Setbacks

    Appendix 24-B: Decommissioning and Financial Security Schedule

    EXHIBIT 25 Other Permits and Approvals – Rev. 1

    Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c Application
    Overview

    This section is in progress. Please visit DMM Matter Number 21-00748 to review the Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c Application.

    Application (Exhibits, Figures & Appendices)

    This section is in progress. Please visit DMM Matter Number 21-00748 to review the Hemlock Ridge Solar 94-c Application.

    Frequently asked questions (FAQS)
    What safety measures will be put in place?

    We will provide security fencing that will fully encompass the solar fields. Any wires outside of our security fence will be buried. As such, no part of our solar project will be accessible to the public. Within the fence line, all solar equipment will be grounded and touch safe, fully compliant with all applicable codes and accessible only to qualified personnel, with the exception of guided tours. Orientation will be offered to local first responders to educate them about the project, the equipment and access, and response procedures in case of unexpected events. Contact information for our monitoring and response center will be provided and posted on the project fence to ensure the public can easily reach project representatives.

    What will happen to the equipment at the end of the project?

    When a solar project reaches the end of its project life, the project is responsible for executing the approved Decommissioning Plan, including abiding by all local and state decommissioning requirements. This includes the removal, recycling, and disposal of all solar arrays, racking, equipment, and other structures associated with the project, as applicable. The land surface within the project area will be sensibly restored to pre-project conditions to allow a return to agricultural use or other uses consistent with the land-use policies at the time.

    What are the environmental benefits?

    The project will use no fuel and create zero emissions, reducing air pollution and offsetting hundreds of thousands of tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year. Energy generation and environmental equivalents from the project are estimated to include…

    • Equivalent of powering over 36,000 average NY homes per year
    • Equivalent of offsetting ~282,000 tons of CO2 per year
    • Equivalent of carbon captured by ~370,000 acres of U.S. forests
    • Equivalent of offsetting ~311 million pounds of coal burned per year
    • Equivalent of offsetting consumption of ~655,000 barrels of oil

    Contact us

    We want to hear from you! For any inquiries or comments about Hemlock Ridge Solar, please contact us directly at:

    • Project email: hemlockridgesolar@aes.com

    • Project phone number: 866-757-7697 (866-SLRPOWR)

    • Office address:
      292 Madison Avenue
      15th Floor
      New York, NY 10017

     

    New York office hours

    Have a question or comment for AES about our work in your community? Give us a call during these hours to talk to a company representative. If you call outside of these hours, we will return your call as soon as possible.

    • Every Monday 11:00 AM-1:00 PM ET
    • Every Thursday 4:00 PM-6:00 PM ET
    • Call our New York team at 866-757-7697 (866-SLRPOWR)

    Stay updated

    If you would like to be designated as a Project Stakeholder and added to the Project's Master Stakeholder List, please fill out the following form. Individuals and groups on this list receive mailed copies of the regulatory project notices required by 94-c. 

    Name
    Back to top Products
  • Our offerings
  • Your profile
  • Sustainability
  • Clean growth & innovation
  • Our people
  • Community partnerships
  • Sustainability resources
  • Careers
  • Meet our people
  • Search jobs
  • For the press
  • Press releases
  • News & Events
  • Media kit
  • Presentation & webcasts
  • Investors
  • News & events
  • Reports & filings
  • Stock information
  • Investor resources
  • Governance
  • For partners
  • Partnerships
  • Landowners
  • Suppliers
  • About us
  • Our history
  • Our leadership
  • Global x local
  • Contact us
  • Office locations
  • Ethics & compliance
  • Jump back to top