Solar power being considered for Thomaston High School, Black Rock School

April 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Green Energy News

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THOMASTON — The Thomaston Board of Selectmen has begun discussing the possibility of using solar energy at both Black Rock and Thomaston High schools, in an effort to save money and be energy savvy.

Specifically, solar panels are being considered for the school buildings’ roofs.

“The principal motivation for considering solar panels on Black Rock and Thomaston High schools is to generate a revenue stream through the state-sponsored ZREC program,” First Selectman Ed Mone said.

ZREC stands for Zero-emission Renewable Energy Credits.

Thomaston Center School is not being considered for solar panels due to its orientation to the sun and its lack of adequate space on its roof, Mone said.

The idea of installing solar panels grew out of the discussion of repairing the roofs at all three of the schools, which are leaking and need significant repairs, Mone said. Installing solar panels, and receiving revenue from the ZREC program, would be a means to offset the cost of the necessary roof repairs.

The estimated cost of fitting Thomaston High and Black Rock schools with solar panels would be$1.21 million, which Mone said would likely have to be financed over a 20-year period. However, by using solar energy at the two buildings, he said the projected savings over the two decades would be $1,219,522. In addition, $744,642 would be reimbursed through ZREC.

The estimated amounts are not yet certain.

“Due to the nature of solar energy, the energy savings cannot be guaranteed,” Mone said.

The Board of Selectmen must consider several factors before it can make a decision to take action on the solar panels. Continued…

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THOMASTON — The Thomaston Board of Selectmen has begun discussing the possibility of using solar energy at both Black Rock and Thomaston High schools, in an effort to save money and be energy savvy.

Specifically, solar panels are being considered for the school buildings’ roofs.

“The principal motivation for considering solar panels on Black Rock and Thomaston High schools is to generate a revenue stream through the state-sponsored ZREC program,” First Selectman Ed Mone said.

ZREC stands for Zero-emission Renewable Energy Credits.

Thomaston Center School is not being considered for solar panels due to its orientation to the sun and its lack of adequate space on its roof, Mone said.

The idea of installing solar panels grew out of the discussion of repairing the roofs at all three of the schools, which are leaking and need significant repairs, Mone said. Installing solar panels, and receiving revenue from the ZREC program, would be a means to offset the cost of the necessary roof repairs.

The estimated cost of fitting Thomaston High and Black Rock schools with solar panels would be$1.21 million, which Mone said would likely have to be financed over a 20-year period. However, by using solar energy at the two buildings, he said the projected savings over the two decades would be $1,219,522. In addition, $744,642 would be reimbursed through ZREC.

The estimated amounts are not yet certain.

“Due to the nature of solar energy, the energy savings cannot be guaranteed,” Mone said.

The Board of Selectmen must consider several factors before it can make a decision to take action on the solar panels.

“This process is purely exploratory at this point,” Mone said. “The level of debt the town is currently experiencing must also be considered before moving on this plan. We have many needs in Thomaston, and must maintain our financing options for items, such as roofs, that crop up from time to time and must be addressed. With that said, this is an interesting and creative means that needs to be properly evaluated and utilized if deemed in the best interest of Thomaston.”

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