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Getting Greener - Green Mountain Power Rooftop Solar Panels Program

 Big ideas for solar power

Editor: The United States has enormous rooftop square footage located in a combo of vast urban, suburban and corporate real-estate environments. President Obama's Energy Secretary Steven Chu has proposed reducing greenhouse gas emissions by painting all U.S. rooftops (and highways) white.

Perhaps our Green Mountain State should consider taking it one step further and fund our science departments to help industry to come up with viable, efficient solar-collecting panels for most or all rooftops in Vermont. The funding should come from federal, state, private and industry coffers, including using financial incentives through energy development subsidies.

A program for white rooftops and solar-panels can be conjoined. Some rooftops might be better used for solar collecting; some rooftops are better suited to painting them white; some for both. But don't go near those rooftops with only a half-purpose.

Moreover, our highways can benefit in a similar way by not only making blacktop lighter, but building aqueducts of solar panels along many roadsides to feed wattage into national grids. If it's true that Obama's feds want to lead the way, then let us live up to our reputation as an enlightened population and give our green thumbs-up sign in favor of doing it right this time and show the nation the way.

Vidda Crochetta,
http://www.reformer.com/letters/ci_12508011 Posted Wednesday, June 3, 2009 Reformer.com

Posted Friday July 28, 2017 (NYTimes) Throughout Vermont, customers are signing up for a new program that will allow them to power their homes while entirely disconnected from the grid.

The projects are part of a bold experiment aimed at turning homes, neighborhoods and towns into virtual power plants, able to reduce the amount of energy they draw from the central electric system. But behind them are not green energy advocates or proponents of living off the land. Instead, it’s the local electric company, Green Mountain Power.

As a practical matter, the less electricity the utility pulls from the regional transmission system, especially at times of peak demand, the less it has to pay in fees, producing savings it can pass on to customers. One way it does this is by remotely controlling the batteries installed through its programs, drawing upon the stored energy as needed.

The idea is that customers, especially when they have solar panels, heat pumps and electric vehicles, will be better able to monitor and manage their energy use.

But in an industry known for caution, Green Mountain Power can be nimble, in part because it is so small — just 265,000 customers — and has a relatively receptive customer base.

Read Full Text: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/29/business/energy-environment/vermont-g...



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My roof is at a 45 degree angle facing due south, but even with the financial incentives offered it was beyond the budget...still hoping to do it someday, though!


Solar Capital of New England

Rutland has shown that when a community focuses on moving away from fossil fuels it leads to stronger economic growth for businesses and for families.



Solar is the Future

And the future is now!


The present is our future

[Act 174 http://www.windhamregional.org/energy/act-174-energy-planning : Act 174 encourages comprehensive energy planning on the regional and town levels throughout the state of Vermont.]

WILMINGTON — A solar company plans to spend about $30,000 to $40,000 to see whether a capped and closed landfill is worth turning into a solar site.

"We're taking the full risk," Ralph Meima, director of project development for Green Lantern Group, told the Select Board on Wednesday, Aug. 2.

An option-to-lease agreement has now been approved, meaning the property cannot be sold or developed while Green Lantern looks into the project's potential. The agreement expires on June 30, 2018.

Board member Ann Manwaring called the agreement "probably good for both sides." Even if the company goes bankrupt, Meima said, the array would still produce electricity and another group would assume operation without customers losing access to their net-metering credits. The array would be about 150 kilowatts, according to Green Lantern.

The Wilmington Town Plan now refers to Act 174, Planning Commission Chairwoman Cheryl LaFlamme said. The 2016 law created new but voluntary standards around municipal and regional energy planning, including information about siting energy-generation facilities. "We're on, Ralph," said Select Board Chairman Tom Fitzgerald after the agreement was unanimously approved.

A lease-option agreement for a closed landfill was also signed between Green Lantern and the town of Newfane. And similar talks are underway in Dover.

Full Text: http://www.reformer.com/stories/wilmington-takes-first-step-in-solar-sit...


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