As part of Earth Week celebrations in Massachusetts, Gov. Charlie Baker (R) announced the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and the Department of Energy Resource (DOER) have selected five towns and three non-profit organizations to participate in Solarize Mass group purchasing solar programs. The programs are funded through the state’s Renewable Energy Trust.
Lincoln, Sudbury, Wayland, Newburyport, and Winthrop were selected to participate in the Solarize Mass program. It will provide residents the opportunity to collectively use the power of bulk purchasing to save up to 21 percent off of the state’s average cost of solar installation.
Newburyport, Lincoln, Sudbury and Wayland will benefit from the Solarize Mass Plus program for a second time. The towns first participated in the program in 2012. In addition to photovoltaic solar, communities had the opportunity to offer group purchasing discounts for solar hot water systems, air source heat pumps or electric cars. Lincoln, Sudbury and Wayland chose to pair their installations with solar hot water systems and Newburyport coupled arrays with air source heat pumps.
Mass Energy Consumers Alliance, the Cape and Islands Self Reliance Corporation, and the Marion Institute will participate in the Mass Solar Connect program. The nonprofits’ collective 35,000 members will get discounts on solar installations through online solar providers. Mass Energy through EnergySage, while Self Reliance and the Marion Institute will get discounts through Pick My Solar.
“Massachusetts continues to lead the nation in clean energy solutions, propelled by a business climate that encourages and enables new innovative technologies,” said Gov. Baker. “The Solarize Mass Program and the Mass Solar Connect Program are two great examples of our administration working with communities and nonprofits to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the Commonwealth, while simultaneously bringing energy costs down for the people of Massachusetts.”
With almost 1,500 megawatts installed, Massachusetts’ solar market continues to thrive through incentive programs and progressive policies. The state’s renewable energy sector maintained a 6 percent growth rate during 2016 and has grown into an $18.8 billion industry, according to DOER. That has resulted in the addition of 6,317 renewable energy jobs between 2015 and 2016, bringing the total to 105,212 workers.
“It is extremely important that we continue to support and provide clean energy solutions that are readily available to the citizens of the Commonwealth,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. “The benefits of promoting solar power and other green technologies are numerous, including the lowering of energy costs, decreasing the state’s dependency on fossil fuels, reducing harmful greenhouse gas emissions, and creating a cleaner environment.”
The programs have been successful in growing the amount of renewable energy in Massachusetts. Solarize Mass has helped 58 towns and cities add more than 3,400 rooftop solar installations totaling 20.6 megawatts since 2011. The Mass Solar Connect program, launched in 2015, has already facilitated the installation of 1.9 megawatts of solar, offsetting the release of an estimated 1,700 metric tons of greenhouse gases annually.Tweet