Solar on Rhode Island Closed Landfills

Mark Dennen, Supervisor
235 Promenade St
Providence, RI 02908
401-537-4323

Kasie McKenzie, Environmental Engineer II
235 Promenade St
Providence, RI 02908
401-537-4349

Background

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) Office of Land Revitalization and Sustainable Materials Management (LRSMM) encourages post-closure use of landfills as long as the use will not compromise the environmental protection afforded by the landfill cap and closure. While capped and closed landfills may not be appropriate sites for residential or commercial development, they are more suitable for the installation of a photovoltaic (PV) solar array, which generate renewable energy and may provide income for landfill owners. This page includes LRSMM’s requirements, regulations, the process for approving and additional resources needed to install solar.

Regulation

In January of 2021 LRSMM revised the Solid Waste Regulation No. 2 (250-RICR-140-05-2). Specifically, Section 2.1.9(J) - Installation of Solar Panels on Landfills was added. To better understand this new Section, the following Guidance Document was created.

Guidance Document

In the effort to provide a streamlined process for approving solar on landfills, the following guidance document provides a summary of the regulations as well as the permitting process and design considerations when choosing solar.

Interactive Map of RI Landfills

This interactive map shows the location, status, and solar farms on RI landfills.

Additional Resources