Three Towns – Two Installers – One Solar Program!

Would you like to be your own power-plant? Make part or all of your electricity on your own roof, even sell the excess to neighbors or Eversource? Depending on your situation, solar photovoltaic systems pay for themselves faster than you might think, and after that they could generate income, all while saving the climate, creating energy independence, and raising our community’s resilience!

And how about water heating? Hate that sound of the furnace burning up oil on a hot summer’s day? A solar hot water system could mean that furnace stays off for several months a year…

The towns of Lincoln, Sudbury and Wayland teamed up to submit a successful proposal to Solarize Massachusetts PLUS. This program, administered by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and the Department of Energy Resources (DOER), helps our towns select the best installer for solar PV and the best installer for solar hot water through a rigorous and tested vetting process. The group purchasing structure can deliver significant savings on costs compared to the statewide average to residents and businesses.

After months of hard work, the Solarize LSW volunteer teams (with the help of the Mass Clean Energy Center and municipal reps) selected the installers. They are SolarFIair for PV and New England Solar Hot Water for, you guessed it, solar hot water.

We had 19 proposals, that is 19 companies eager to work with Wayland, Lincoln and Sudbury: a record in Solarize Mass history and a testimony to the commitment in our towns to clean energy!

SOLARIZE MASS offers program benefits within a limited time frame.  We will start official sign-up at the first Meet the Installer event on Tuesday, July 25, 2017. The sign-up period will be from them till January 31, 2018. After that the deals will go away again. All installations will be done within a year of the start-date.

The three towns already partnered for Solarize LSW in 2012. The program was a great success. We signed the first Solarize 2012 contract (out of 17 communities) and also had the first solar PV installation. We reached the lowest price tier in record time. We were the only group to surpass a megawatt of total capacity. Together, we added 137 systems totaling 1281 kw.

This year there will also be an offering of solar hot water. Unlike solar PV, which converts direct sunlight to electricity, solar hot water transfers heat from the atmosphere directly to a hot water tank in your home. This technology can be more forgiving of shadier rooftops, of which our towns have many.

Though we have seen a widespread acceptance of solar PV, there is good potential for more. Many homeowners who were not able to participate in 2012 would like to now. The turnover of homeowners makes for a new pool of potential Solarizers, and new houses and housing developments are coming up, often in the sunniest lots.

In order to better understand demand, we invite you to fill in your town’s Survey. The links are as follows:

Even if you don’t think you are a candidate for solar, we would still like you to fill out the Survey, as we are also working on helping those who have roofs without optimal sun exposure or orientation, or roofs that are too old. Also non-profits and condo-owners are encouraged to get in touch, as well as solar owners who want to extend their arrays. The Survey polls interest in other energy-efficiency measures.

The Solar Teams are as follows:

  • Lincoln: Greening Lincoln, Lincoln Green Energy Committee, and the Assistant Town Administrator. They can be reached at SolarizeLincoln@gmail.com.
  • Sudbury: Sustainable Sudbury, the Sudbury Energy Committee, the Sudbury Facilities Director. They can be reached at SolarizeSudbury@gmail.com.
  • Wayland: Transition Wayland, the Wayland Energy and Climate Committee, the Wayland Public Buildings Director. They can be reached at SolarizeWayland@gmail.com.

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