‘Community solar’ is a hot business
Solar Power , , , , ,

‘Community solar’ is a hot business

Interest in solar energy is booming in Massachusetts, and it's no different in Lunenburg. At a recent Board of Selectmen's meeting, representatives from Nexamp, a solar-energy provider, discussed a proposed community-solar project that would involve the development of a 500-kilowatt solar farm on Fisher Road in Fitchburg. [adinserter block="1"] For this, Nexamp would treat Lunenburg as an "anchor tenant," meaning that half of the electricity generated through net-metering credits would benefit the town, representatives said. Ratepayers would have a 15 percent discount on every bill, they said. At that time, Nexamp needed about 50 more people to sign up, and,…
Read More
Amherst residents can still blaze a path to Solar for others to follow
Solar Power , , , ,

Amherst residents can still blaze a path to Solar for others to follow

Based on feedback I've received from my letter which was published on the Gazette's website on Oct. 22, and which appeared in the Oct 26 print edition, I wanted to write a follow up. The short of it is that the Town of Amherst should be applauded for going solar, no matter which path it chooses. I also understand that my proposal came in far too late in the process to have adequate time to be vetted properly by the Town, and that there are numerous uncertainties (including debt-financing) that would need to be addressed before moving forward, where as…
Read More
The time to raise solar net-metering caps in Massachusetts is NOW
Solar Power , , , , , , , , , ,

The time to raise solar net-metering caps in Massachusetts is NOW

Massachusetts State Representative Robert DeLeo (follow him on Twitter), Senate President Stan Rosenberg (also on Twitter!), and others should all be applauded for separating the States net-metering caps from the rest of the energy-related legislation that's currently winding its way through Capitol Hill. The filling of the caps has stalled several solar projects across the state, due to the lack of certainty on the issue, so the sooner there is clarity on that, the sooner they can proceed. That net-metering, on its own, can not break Massachusetts’ dependance on fossil fuels, is certain. What it can do though is dramatically reduce our consumption of those…
Read More
My Uncle went solar, and is already seeing the results!
Solar Power , , , , , ,

My Uncle went solar, and is already seeing the results!

In residential solar-related news, last month my uncle made a triumphant post to Facebook, showing off his home, newly adorned with a PV array. [caption id="attachment_788" align="aligncenter" width="860"] A Massachusetts home with roof mounted solar panels.[/caption] The details are as follows: 10.8 kW installed and active as of September 10, 2015 Total cost of $44,900 Federal and State tax credits of approx. $14,500 Total cost down: $30,400 [adinserter block="1"] The installer, All Energy Solar of Amherst, MA, estimated that the system will generate 10 SRECs per year, and provided a guesstimated value of $325 per SREC, or $3,250/year. That might be a too…
Read More
Open Letter to the Town of Amherst, MA
Solar Power , , , , , , , , , ,

Open Letter to the Town of Amherst, MA

I wrote a letter to the editor of my local paper, laying out an alternative path for my town to take in its plans for going solar. It was published on October 22. On Tuesday, Oct. 27, Amherst will hold its second informational meeting about the town’s plan to go solar. While that is a laudable goal, it’s equally important we make certain we’re getting the best deal we can. Big dollars are at stake to the town and homeowners, property owners and business owners — and by extension to its tenants and patrons of local businesses. Assuming 2 or…
Read More
Pilgrim nuclear power plant to close in Plymouth
Solar Power , ,

Pilgrim nuclear power plant to close in Plymouth

[adinserter block="1"] The company that owns Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station said Tuesday morning that it plans to close the 43-year-old plant in Plymouth. The company said in a statement it will close the plant no later than June 2019. “The decision to close Pilgrim was incredibly difficult because of the effect on our employees and the communities in which they work and live,” Leo Denault, Entergy’s chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement. Pilgrim supplies an average of about 5 percent of the region’s energy, and the 680-megawatt plant accounts for about 84 percent of the state’s non-carbon…
Read More
How do SRECS Work?
Solar Power , , , , , , , ,

How do SRECS Work?

In Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and most of the east-coast and Mid-Atlantic solar markets, the main incentives driving the solar market are SRECs, which stands for Solar Renewable Energy Credits. If you’re looking to get into the industry or expand your current business, you need to know how they work, how to communicate their use to customers and where you can find more information if you really want to dig deep. We’ve had a lot of people asking about them, and though the large developers have them figured out, we want to make sure the small guys are getting in…
Read More