Frequently Asked Questions

Who is Vesper Energy? What other solar projects has Vesper Energy developed?

Vesper Energy provides innovative solutions to today’s complex energy challenges. Headquartered in Irving, Texas, Vesper Energy is comprised of professionals who have collectively delivered more than 10 GW of renewable energy projects globally. Today, Vesper Energy’s development pipeline includes over 55 renewable energy and energy storage assets with a generating capacity of 17 GW; enough to power more than 2 million homes. Working with their customers, communities, and business partners, Vesper Energy develops, owns, and operates renewable energy projects across the United States with the goal to build a better energy infrastructure.

How many jobs are created for a project like Athens Renewable Energy?

A project the size of Athens Renewable Energy will typically create approximately 200 jobs during construction, as well as contracting opportunities for local manufacturers and vendors. Once operational, the site will directly employ full-time workers and will also support additional local jobs by stimulating the local economy.

How do solar projects impact nearby property values?

Solar energy makes for a great neighbor. It is quiet and does not produce a smell. But don’t take our word for it, see what experts in the industry are saying about solar and property values: Source - SEIA.

What will the project look like? Will there be visual screening for the benefit of the residents and property owners adjoining the project?

Athens Renewable Energy is committed to developing a vegetation management plan which adheres to state and local rules. Development of these plans would include consideration of the most appropriate plants for the area.

What happens when the project is decommissioned?

Athens Renewable Energy leases include decommissioning requirements on leased land. Additionally, Athens will create an overall decommissioning plan to ensure the removal of all equipment at the end of the project’s life. Once the equipment is removed, the land can be returned to its original use.

How are solar panels disposed of?

The vast majority of solar panels installed in the U.S. are still within their operational lifespans. As such, cost-effective opportunities to recycle solar panels are limited. However, this is an issue the solar industry is working proactively to address, and as more solar panels reach end of life in the coming years, opportunities to recover and recycle the materials in solar panels will expand. Details on panel recycling can be found in the United States Environmental Protection Agency website, at

Are Li-ion batteries safe?

Battery energy storage systems (BESS) use the same technology found in many widely used in consumer products, tools and electric vehicles, and well-designed BESS are safe and reliable. Fires involving BESS can occur, but only in extreme conditions. To reduce the risk of fire and ensure the safety of the system, each BESS is equipped with automatic fire suppression equipment, and its own air conditioning or cooling system to ensure it operates within the ideal temperature range. If a fire does occur, it is generally easily contained, and has only minimal, temporary impact on local air quality. Vesper Energy will work with local fire departments and emergency responders to ensure they have adequate training and equipment to respond to any safety issues that may arise.

Do Li-ion BESS contain hazardous materials?

The US EPA classifies and determines what qualifies as hazardous waste. Hazardous waste can range from liquids, solids, gases, or sludges and can be discarded commercial products, like cleaning fluids or pesticides, or the by-products of manufacturing processes. Recently, the US EPA released guidance requiring many types of lithium-ion batteries to be disposed of as hazardous waste. Athens Renewable Energy is committed to following pertinent federal, state, and local disposal and recycling regulations. The high-quality Li-Ion batteries used for Vesper Energy’s BESS projects can be repurposed and reused in other utility-scale battery applications or downcycled and repurposed for other technology such as phones and tools. Each Li-ion battery unit is encased and compartmentalized to prevent any materials from interacting with the surrounding area. Athens Renewable Energy is committed to following all relevant federal, state, and local regulations regarding environmental safety and will regularly review and update its policies to align with industry best practices

Will local first responders and firefighters need additional training?

It is unlikely that a serious event will happen at the site. However, a comprehensive emergency management plan will be created prior to construction. This will ensure safety personnel in the community are trained and able to respond appropriately.

Can the batteries be recycled?

Widespread adoption of BESS is still relatively new, so recycling opportunities are currently limited. However, the energy storage industry is working to develop recycling opportunities to meet future demand. Another option is to “downcycle” batteries and give them a second life in a different application when their performance falls below the level needed for a utility-scale power plant.
Do you want to learn even more about Solar and Energy Storage? Check out our Sources page for more resources.