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Solar-Powered NH Town Celebrates Clean Energy Transition

Brentwood, NH — Municipalities across the country are leading the charge to transition to clean energy, and the Town of Brentwood is the latest example. A public ribbon cutting and tour are scheduled on September 16th to commemorate the recent installation of a ground-mounted solar array that will offset 100% of the town’s municipal electric load, with the exception of Swasey School. The event coincides with the town’s 275th anniversary celebration. ReVision Energy representatives will be on hand through 3 p.m. on Saturday to conduct tours.

Public Ribbon Cutting & Tour

Saturday, September 16th
11 a.m. to Noon
Brentwood Fire Department
419 Middle Road
Brentwood, NH

After Brentwood voters approved two related warrant articles this spring, ReVision Energy installed a 132.37-kilowatt solar array this summer on land between the fire department and Route 125. Harnessing the sun to generate electricity will save taxpayers as much as $1 million over the life of the system while also drastically minimizing the town’s impact on the environment.

“The town is excited to partner with Revision Energy on a great project that will save the town thousands of dollars every year,” said Rob Wofchuck, Brentwood conservation committee member. “The solar array will significantly increase the town’s energy security while drastically lowering the town’s carbon footprint. We firmly believe that it is the job of every municipality to lead by example. This project is a visible symbol that Brentwood is looking toward the future and cares about the environment and sustainability.”

The array includes 434 solar panels, each rated at 305 watts, spread across eight rows of ground-mounted racking secured by ground screws. The panels are backed by a 25-year warranty and have an expected lifespan of 40 years. If all of the solar panels were laid lengthwise, end-to-end, the panels would span nearly one-half mile.

The system also includes three inverters, which convert direct current generated by the array into alternating current used by the town. A web-based monitoring platform will allow the town to track the array’s performance.

The array is expected to produce approximately 165,300 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. The clean energy produced by the array is equivalent to offsetting 175,879 pounds of carbon dioxide per year, which is equivalent to offsetting the emissions of 185 barrels of oil or 8,977 gallons of gas or the carbon sequestered by 76 acres of forests.

ReVision Energy owns the system through a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the town. The agreement is an innovative financing tool that allows the municipality to benefit from solar power at no upfront cost. Under the terms of the PPA, the town purchases electricity from ReVision Energy at a negotiated rate. At year seven of the agreement, the Town of Brentwood will have the option to purchase the system at a significant discount, enabling the municipality to generate free solar power for decades to come.

Savings over the first six years combined are estimated to be approximately $49,000. Projected average savings from year seven and beyond are $28,000 each year, if the town agrees to purchase the system.

“As a local company based in Brentwood, we’re grateful for the opportunity to help the town in which we operate transition away from fossil fuels,” said Jack Ruderman, director of community solar initiatives at ReVision Energy. “Brentwood is a shining example of our mission, and it’s inspiring to partner with a town that embraces the value of clean energy.”

Senator Hassan Highlights Cuts To EPA At NH Based ReVision Energy

At ReVision Energy, Senator Hassan Highlights Harmful Impact of President Trump’s Proposed Budget Cuts on New Hampshire’s Renewable Energy Industry

Senator Hassan speaking with employees at ReVision Energy in Brentwood.

BRENTWOOD – Today, building on her efforts to create a more innovative and affordable clean energy future for New Hampshire’s people and businesses, Senator Maggie Hassan visited ReVision Energy, a solar energy company that is helping to create jobs and reduce New Hampshire’s carbon footprint while cutting energy costs for consumers.

The Senator toured the facility, met with employees, and emphasized how President Trump’s proposed budget cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other federal programs that promote local renewable energy efforts would hurt New Hampshire’s people, businesses, and economy.

“ReVision Energy is helping to protect our environment while creating jobs and building a more innovative and affordable clean energy future for our people and businesses in the Granite State,” Senator Hassan said.  “Unfortunately, President Trump’s proposed budget undermines the important work of businesses like ReVision Energy, drastically cutting research programs at the EPA and the Department of Energy that focus on promoting energy efficiency and reducing our carbon footprint. I will continue to fight against these reckless cuts and work to achieve a cleaner environment and stronger energy future that will help our citizens, businesses, and economy thrive.”

ReVision Energy is working to build a cleaner, more innovative energy future in New Hampshire by leading the way in solar design, installation, and service for homes, businesses, municipal buildings, and nonprofits throughout the state and region. ReVision Energy is also a partner in the community-led effort, Energize 360, which encourages residents to measure, reduce, and renew energy use.

Senator Hassan has been a vocal opponent of President Trump’s proposed budget cuts to the EPA. Senator Hassan joined Senator Shaheen and others in sending a letter to the President expressing extreme concern over the cuts and the threat they pose to the EPA’s ability to protect public health and ensure that citizens have clean air and clean water.

New Report Shows Significant Gains Could Be Made If Governor Sununu Reduces Power Plant Pollution

Tilton, NH – As the federal government attempts to roll back programs that limit air pollution, Toxics Action Center, Environment New Hampshire and other partner groups released a new report showing that Governor Sununu could increase the benefits of reducing power plant pollution. The report, Doubling Down on Climate Progress, concludes that increasing the emissions reduction goals from 2.5% to 5% doubles the strength of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative would cut dangerous pollution from power plants in half by 2030 and double our investment in clean energy – enough to weatherize 380,000 homes, or well over half of the homes in the state.

“Right now, we’re counting on Governor Sununu to take action to protect our health and the climate,” said Dan Westervelt, Vermont and New Hampshire Community Organizer with Toxics Action Center. “Tomorrow, on April 20th, the public comment period of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, the regional clean air and climate protection program, will be opened. We are urging Granite Staters to call on Governor Sununu to double the strength of the program so we can reap the benefits we receive from less pollution and more clean energy.”

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, RGGI (pronounced “Reggie”) is the best regional clean air and climate protection program in the country. This program limits dangerous pollution from power plants in New Hampshire and across the region – helping to slow the warming of our planet. It also fuels investment in clean energy by making polluters pay to pollute.

The report, co-authored by the Frontier Group, illustrates the opportunity before the governor. It finds that doubling the strength of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (compared to simply keeping the program on its current trajectory) would:

  • Avoid up to an additional 100 million tons of pollution over a decade, the equivalent of making more than 1 million homes run entirely on solar power.

  • Help New Hampshire invest twice as much in clean energy – on the order of $84 million over ten years, or enough to weatherize 380,000 homes.

“Kinder Morgan’s Northeast Energy Direct (NED) pipeline served as a wakeup call for us to fund and support RGGI,” said Pat Martin, an activist who worked on stopping Kinder Morgan’s Northeast Energy Direct (NED) pipeline with the community New Hampshire Pipeline Awareness Network (NH PLAN). “To tackle the climate crisis, we need to quickly shift away from dirty fuels like coal and gas, and move to renewable energy and energy efficiency. The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative can help us get there faster.”

The report also reviewed the impressive benefits the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative has achieved for New Hampshire since it was created in 2005. Key findings include:

  • It has helped to cut global warming pollution from power plants 67%. That is the equivalent of retiring 1.6 coal-fired power plants. On average, power plant pollution in the region has been falling by almost 5 percent per year. In 2016, pollution went down by 4.8 percent.

  • It has helped to clean our air, saving 10 lives over its first six years in operation.

  • It has driven a $116 million investment in clean energy, energy efficiency and consumer benefit programs in New Hampshire. Across the whole region, those programs have locked in more than $4.6 billion in long term savings on our energy bills. That’s an incredible $3.5 in savings for every dollar spent on clean energy.

“The energy efficiency project that we did at the Winnisquam School District took advantage of approximately $31,000 in (RGGI-funded) rebates for lighting and variable frequency drive pumps” said former State Representative of Belknap 4, Ian Raymond. “Of the funding for the project, $31,770 came from RGGI. We replaced old pumps with newer energy efficient pumps with Variable Frequency Drives, and replaced approximately 2400 lighting units with energy efficient lights. All of the efficiency upgrades all together has saved the taxpayers $1.38 million so far and is projected to save over $5 million over the life of the project.”

In February, more than 500 organizations, businesses, health professionals, lawmakers and community leaders from the Northeast called on Governor Sununu and other regional governors to double the strength of the program and close several loopholes.

“As good as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is, we can make it better,” said Madeline Page, of Environment New Hampshire. “We need Governor Sununu and governors across the region to accelerate our progress in the fight against global warming, and magnify the important benefits that come from reducing pollution.”


Gov Hassan Ceremonially Signs Net-Metering Increase

Governor Hassan shows national leadership as state studies clean energy future

CONCORD, NH – Governor Maggie Hassan joined local businesses and solar advocates today for a ceremonial signing of New Hampshire’s net metering bill, HB 1116, and to continue pushing for energy choice and clean energy job growth to help make the Granite State a national leader.

The event took place at the Throwback Brewery in North Hampton, where ReVision Energy recently installed a 48-kilowatt rooftop array, making it New Hampshire’s largest solar-powered brewery. Governor Hassan demonstrated tremendous leadership by officially signing HB 1116 into law earlier this year and doubling the state’s net metering cap — net metering is a policy that enables the right to self-generation and fair credit for power sent to neighbors. The bill also initiated a 10-month study by the state’s Public Utility Commission (PUC) to explore the future of clean energy policy in New Hampshire.

“I am proud of our bipartisan work this year to raise the cap on net metering, which will help our clean energy industry continue to grow and thrive,” Governor Hassan said. “Solar and other small scale clean energy resources are creating good-paying, high-quality jobs, spurring economic development and helping combat climate change, which we see firsthand here in the state’s largest solar-powered brewery. I am confident that the PUC process will result in a fair net metering tariff that will encourage energy diversification and clean energy job growth, and I look forward to continuing to work with members from both parties and the business community to support our growing clean energy economy.”

Recent statewide polling shows that New Hampshire voters–both Republicans and Democrats–favor solar as an energy source, and a clear majority support net metering. Moreover, national polls have found solar energy to be an issue that could sway independent voters in key swing states like New Hampshire.

Solar energy is an exciting and growing sector that can help accelerate the state’s economy. Local businesses like ReVision Energy depend on strong, stable energy policy to allow them to create jobs throughout the state.

“Today New Hampshire has the second highest per capita fossil fuel consumption and carbon pollution in New England,” said Phil Coupe, Co-Founder of ReVision Energy. “We are honored to stand beside strong clean energy leaders like Governor Hassan who is taking decisive action to unleash the powerful job creation opportunity represented by the transition to solar energy. But to maximize the creation of solar jobs and to bring solar savings to more individuals and businesses, we need certainty and a well-defined time horizon on clean energy policy so that we can invest with confidence in a sustainable energy future for New Hampshire.”

What’s Next

The PUC has already kicked off their study process that will determine New Hampshire’s future around renewable energy and advancing clean jobs throughout the state. It’s critical that smart energy policies — like net metering — are upheld by the Commission to encourage energy choice and clean energy job growth across the state.

“Governor Hassan demonstrated great leadership by taking action to protect energy choice in New Hampshire, and we are hopeful regulators will do the same going forward,” said Chris Rauscher, Director of Public Policy for Sunrun and spokesperson for TASC. “We appreciate the opportunity to work with the Commission and collaborate with other stakeholders to find customer-focused policy solutions that will protect the ability of energy consumers to generate and use affordable solar power from their rooftops.

Local Leaders Urge Hassan to Maintain Progress Toward Clean Power

CONCORD, NH –  On Thursday, February 18, community leaders with Rights & Democracy and 350 New Hampshire urged Governor Maggie Hassan to continue working toward New Hampshire’s clean energy requirements under the Clean Power Plan. Last week, the Supreme Court issued a temporary stay of the Clean Power Plan, the national initiative to reduce pollution from power plants and catalyze the transition to a clean energy economy.

While this decision temporarily halts federal enforcement of the landmark initiative, it does nothing to stop climate change and pollution in communities across New Hampshire. It also does nothing to prevent states from continuing to cut emissions and plan for the eventual implementation of a just, equitable system to build a clean energy future that works for everyone, especially people of color and low-income people.

“The clean power plan is a great first step in transitioning to the renewable energy future we need. Governor Hassan supports the Clean Power Plan so I see no reason why New Hampshire wouldn’t continue its effort in pushing for clean energy,” said Griffin Sinclair-Wingate of Durham and member of Rights & Democracy. “Between the impact of extreme weather and rising sea levels, New Hampshire can’t wait for bold action to address climate change.”

Governor Hassan responded, saying, “I have been a strong supporter of the Clean Power Plan, and the Supreme Court’s decision to delay this important step forward is very disappointing.”

Rights & Democracy and 350 New Hampshire are joined by similar community-based groups across the country Thursday in holding actions to urge every state to maintain its progress toward realizing the carbon-reduction goals under the Clean Power Plan. This comes as part of National People’s Action’s work to ensure that the Clean Power Plan is implemented in a way that best meets the needs of low-income communities and communities of color. Today, 68 percent of African Americans live within 30 miles of a coal power plant and 80 percent of Latinos live in areas that fail to meet EPA air quality standards. These demographic realities result in dramatic health, safety, and economic consequences for these communities. Through the Clean Power Plan implementation, NPA and its affiliates seek to reduce the concentration of dirty energy in low-income communities and communities of color. The initiative also works to encourage targeted investment in renewable energy and weatherization in neighborhoods who have for too long borne the brunt of pollution.

Social Media:  Follow @RightsNH, #ClimateCantWait

Rights & Democracy is grassroots organization in Vermont and New Hampshire dedicated to organizing everyday people to make their voices heard and win real change for their communities.

350 New Hampshire is a volunteer-based group started by passionate Granite Staters working on multigenerational solutions to develop a people-based transition to a renewable energy future.

National People’s Action is a network of 29 grassroots organizations in 18 states working together to advance a racial and economic justice agenda for a new economy and true democracy.

The State of Our Climate: Why We Must Build a Clean Energy Economy

ngc_lead-vertical_R-01In the wake of President Obama’s final State of the Union address, our country has had the opportunity to reflect upon the tremendous strides toward combating climate change that the United States has made over these past seven years.  From increased fuel efficiency standards on automobiles to the historic UN climate deal reached in Paris, America has made significant progress—both at home and abroad—to ensure that the state of our union remains strong. 

But our union will never truly be secure until we tackle climate change, which threatens our economy, our health, and our national security. That’s why NextGen Climate is calling for America to be powered with more than 50 percent clean energy by 2030, putting us on the path to a completely clean energy economy by 2050. It’s up to the American people to ensure that our next president is prepared—on day one—to help solve this crisis by accelerating our country’s transition to a clean energy future.  

We know that transitioning to clean energy is an economic growth opportunity for our country creating jobs, lowering energy costs for families and businesses, and driving our country’s economic growth. In fact, according to a recent report from ICF International, this transition will create up to 2 million jobs by 2050 and increase disposable incomes by as much as $650 per household.

At the same time, the cost of climate inaction would be disastrous. Leading researchers predict that inaction on climate change will lower America’s GDP by 5 percent through 2050 and 36 percent by the end of this century—dramatically expanding income inequality as these impacts disproportionately affect low-income households. 

As President Obama begins his final year in office and the race for his successor is underway, one thing is clear—addressing climate change is essential to ensuring America remains strong and secure, our economy continues to lead the world, our society becomes more just, and our children have access to brighter, better future.  

There is too much at stake to ignore the greatest challenge our country faces.

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