Using the sun to power our homes, businesses, and government buildings has come a long way in Massachusetts. Solar capacity has increased 30-fold since 2007, when Governor Patrick set his goal of installing 250 megawatts by 2017. We’re now at 105 MW installed, with solar arrays in at least 334 of our 351 cities and towns.
This solar momentum will be enhanced by the recent award of a $566,354 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative, Rooftop Solar Challenge. We have developed the “Mass Solar: Making it EZ” pilot program to ease the installation of solar photovoltaics (PV), make solar energy more accessible and affordable for Massachusetts residents and small businesses, and maintain our state’s leadership in the clean energy sector.
Five cities and towns – Boston, Cambridge, Harvard, Hatfield, and Winchester – are partnering with the Department of Energy Resources, Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, the Solar Energy Business Association of New England, the Massachusetts Board of Building Regulations and Standards, and MassDevelopment to develop solutions for lowering the non-hardware – or soft costs – of solar installations. These soft costs account for up to 40 percent of the total cost of installed rooftop PV systems in the United States. I am thrilled that Massachusetts is involved in this initiative to advance the adoption of solar energy and hope you will check out the video below and the links to find out more information.
You can find more information online at DOER or by visiting the U.S. Department of Energy's SunShot Initiative web page.
Solar a “No-Go” on Your Roof? Share Through Community Solar posted on Jul 16
Harvard residents who wanted solar on their homes and were unable to get it due to shading, sloping, or structural barriers, found a solution by sharing the Harvard Solar Garden, an approximately 250 kW project, provides 41 residents and six small businesses with sustainable, clean energy. .
Summer’s Here: Shed Layers and Shed Loads posted on Jul 11
Electricity usage throughout New England reaches its peak during summer heat waves, causing our electricity bills to spike. During periods of high demand, electric utilities typically call on more expensive “peaking” plants to provide extra power. These costs are passed onto larger, non-residential consumers through demand charges on their monthly electricity bill. Municipal buildings can save a significant sum of money if they shut off portions of their electricity during these peak periods.
Massachusetts Rebates Supercharge Electric Vehicle Market posted on Jul 7
The MOR-EV initiative provides rebates of up to $2,500 for electric, fuel cell vehicles and plug-in vehicles with large batteries, and $1,500 for plug-in electric vehicles with smaller batteries. All Massachusetts residents are eligible to receive incentives on purchased and leased new electric vehicles until the rebate funds are gone.