Upper Valley residents celebrate completion of two local community solar projects
Twenty-five Vermont residential customers and two local Impact Investors are the proud co-owners of two new 150 kilowatt solar projects in Norwich, VT. The 25 local homeowners will have lower electric bills by receiving the net metering credits from the projects as offsets on their Green Mountain Power utility bills. One Impact Investor, Norman Levy, will use his share of net metering credits to help lower the electric bills for the Good Neighbor Health Clinic, a local non-profit whose mission is to provide free healthcare to Upper Valley residents in need. “The Clinics are always seeking opportunities to be good stewards of our resources. Whether it’s volunteer time and talent or the environment, we care about the partnerships that build community. We are very grateful to Norman Levy, in particular, for making the solar discount a reality for Good Neighbor Health Clinics.” stated Dana Michalovic, Executive Director.
The second Impact Investor will be using their credits to lower the electric bills of Norwich’s iconic general store Dan and Whits. “Dan & Whit’s is proud to be involved in LOCAL, clean, green energy. It represents everything we believe in, and it is easy to participate. Norwich Solar made the process simple, quick and easy. I highly recommend that you explore the many possible solar options that exist.” said Dan Fraser.
One of the projects is located on a small portion of a local farm owned by David & Jody Horan. Jody said, “I would like to thank Norwich Solar for giving us the opportunity to make a difference, albeit small, in the existential battle against climate change. It was an easy decision for us.” The Horan’s host the array on their Northeast Corner Farm where they have raised Hereford cattle since moving to Norwich in 1988. The cows have access to the pasture grasses below the project and beyond including fields that extend to I-91.
The second project is located on land owned by Jay Mead and Edie Farwell. Like the Horans, their journey into hosting a community solar array started with Norwich Solar installing solar on their homes in the past. Of this project Jay said, “We see climate change as the greatest challenge to humanity. We need to do everything we can to leave a liveable world to our progeny and the other living things of this amazing planet. This is but a small step in that effort. It’s important that we face what it takes to provide electricity right in our backyard. We are happy to provide a space for community solar to happen. This is part of what we call a working landscape.”
Edie added, “We started looking around how to use our resources more effectively to help with the climate challenge. We had an acre of field that wasn’t being used, and that was a good location for solar. We were so pleased to be able to team up with Norwich Solar to install an acre of solar panels on the site. Even with the small stuff, it feels good to be in this partnership and contribute where we can.”
The project is related to the Solarize Norwich program organized by the Norwich Energy Committee. Solarize Norwich encourages local residents to go solar on their roofs, in their yards, and in community solar projects.
Norwich Solar provides solutions to advance the integration and deployment of local clean energy for regional organizations – enabling them to improve their Triple Bottom Line (Financial, Social and Environmental) and move towards energy independence.