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Fort Bragg gaining energy makeover with solar PV-battery storage project by Ameresco, Duke

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Ameresco and Duke Energy are partnering on a solar and storage microgrid for the U.S. Army base at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Renewable energy project contractor Ameresco will deploy a 1.1-MW floating solar photovoltaic system on Big Muddy Lake. The lake is at Camp Mackall, which is a remote Special Forces training site at the base.

The system also will include a 2-MW battery energy storage system to provide a transition to on-site generation during utility outages.

Under the $36 million design-build contract, Duke secures third-party financing to fund construction, and the U.S. Army pays down the financing annually with the utility savings that the project generates over the term of the contract.

Ameresco will also implement improvements to the boiler system, HVAC systems and lighting systems, as well as water conservation systems. In year one of the performance period, the contract will result in utility cost savings for the Army of over $2 million, a reduction in site energy use of 7 percent and a site water use reduction of 20 percent, according to the press release from the companies. Construction is schedule to begin in November.

“With one-tenth of the Army housed at Fort Bragg, including Special Operations, Airborne and Global Response Force forces, it is imperative to provide energy security and improvements to the installation’s utility infrastructure,” said Nicole Bulgarino, Ameresco Executive Vice President & General Manager of Federal Solutions. “We’re eager to get to work installing these energy saving and resiliency measures across Fort Bragg and to support the readiness of the U.S. Army by maintaining a continuous power supply at this critical installation.”

Fort Bragg has more than 50,000 active personnel on site, the largest population of any military installation in the world. It is home of headquarters for the U.S. Army Forces Command, Special Operations Command, Army XVIII Airborne Corps and the U.S. Army Reserve Command.