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New solar field opens in Kingstree

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A new 7.61-acre solar field has opened in Kingstree with 4,256 solar panels that will provide approximately 2 million kilowatt hours a year.

The one-megawatt field is a collaboration between Royal DSM, a Dutch multinational company active in the health, nutrition and materials industries, solar energy equipment supplier Southern Current and Duke Energy subsidiary Progress Energy. The field, which uses DSM anti-reflective coating technology to increase output, will help power the neighboring DSM nutritional products facility.

“At DSM, we always look for innovative ways to minimize our impact on the planet with clean, renewable energy sources,” Hugh Welsh, president of DSM North America, said in a news release. “The Kingstree facility is one more way we are fulfilling our commitment to sustainability and upholding our responsibility to care for our environment.”

The former hay field can power up to 164 homes per megawatt of solar energy produced, creating an annual savings of $120,000, according to the news release.

DSM, which has operations across six continents, is committed to sourcing 50% of its electricity from renewable resources by 2025, the company said. In 2017, DSM purchased 21% of its electricity from renewable sources, up from 8% in 2016.

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