US-based renewable energy firm Hecate Energy has received a siting permit for its Cider Solar Farm from the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES).

Covering around 3,000 acres across the towns of Elba and Oakfield, the 500MW solar farm is claimed to be the largest solar energy project in New York State.

Hecate Energy Cider Solar Farm project developer Harrison LUNA said: “This permit marks a major milestone, not only for Hecate Energy, but in making meaningful progress toward New York State’s ambitious climate goals.

“We are appreciative of the support and coordination for the Cider Solar Project that we received from civic leadership of the Oakfield and Elba town governments.

“Hecate Energy experienced a positive collaborative interaction with ORES during the permitting process, which was key in advancing this project.”

Construction works at the site are expected to begin by next year.

Once completed, the Cider Solar Farm will be capable of generating 920,000MWh of clean energy a year, which will be enough to power more than 120,000 average New York households.

The solar project is also expected to offset 718,694t of carbon emissions a year.

It will be interlinked with the New York State electricity grid through the Dysinger-New Rochester 345kV transmission line.

Luna added: “Cider Solar Farm represents a significant $500m private infrastructure investment in Western New York – not only will this project create hundreds of local jobs, but it will also directly fund local governments, schools, and community services like the fire department and ambulance squad.”

Founded in 2012, Hecate Energy has a total of 1.5GW of solar capacity across projects in the US, which are currently in either construction or operational phases.

Last June, Repsol purchased a 40% stake in the company.