Hartford Unveils Solar Electric System Earned through Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held today at the Goodwin Memorial Branch of the Hartford Public Library in Hartford, Conn., to unveil an 8-kilowatt (kW) solar photovoltaic (PV) system earned by the city of Hartford and installed at this library branch. The solar array was provided by the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) through its Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program and installed by Alteris Renewables (FKA: Solar Works Inc.) of Stonington, Conn.
Hartford Mayor Eddie A. Perez says, “The Capital City is committed to ‘going green’ and what better place to learn about clean energy than in a place of learning – the library. These solar panels at the Goodwin Memorial Branch are a testament to our future both environmentally and economically.”
The city of Hartford is home to numerous supporters of clean energy – residential, corporate and governmental. As a result of their collective efforts and support, the city has earned a total of 10 kW of solar PV from CCEF through the Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program. The 8-kW solar PV system unveiled today at the Goodwin Memorial Branch represents the first installation of the city’s earned 10 kW. The installation is valued at approximately $80,000.
Two clean energy supporters, in particular, helped to boost the kilowatts that Hartford has earned: financial services leader ING and the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). As part of its worldwide sustainability commitment, ING purchased clean, emission-free wind energy credits for its U.S. operations through the CTCleanEnergyOptions program beginning in 2007. The 70 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of clean energy purchased is equal to 100 percent of ING’s electricity usage at the company’s U.S. locations. By making this purchase, ING helped the city of Hartford earn 1 kW of solar PV. In 2008, CCEF recognized ING’s significant clean energy purchase by presenting it with a Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Award. The company also received the 2008 Green Power Leadership Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and a 2008 Connecticut Climate Change Leadership Award from the Governor’s Steering Committee on Climate Change.
Another major clean energy supporter in Hartford has been the Connecticut DEP, which purchased 7.3 GWh of clean energy through the CTCleanEnergyOptions program and, in the process, earned Hartford 7 kW of solar PV.
Numerous other residential and business customers enrolled in the CTCleanEnergyOptions program helped the city earn an additional 2 kW of solar PV.
Mark Mitchell, M.D., M.P.H., chair of the City of Hartford Advisory Commission on the Environment and president of the Connecticut Coalition for Environmental Justice, said, “This solar installation will be a catalyst that will put Hartford on the right path to developing a green strategy for the city. Renewable energy is important for healthy communities and this represents a technology that will help achieve cleaner air.”
Hartford has actively encouraged its residents to sign up for clean energy. In 2008, the city used a Community Innovations Grant from CCEF to provide a local church with “how to” kits to help low-income residents save energy and purchase clean energy. This year a grant was used to implement an elementary school campaign to raise awareness about the benefits of clean energy.
“Hartford is truly a leader when it comes to supporting clean energy,” said Bob Wall, director, energy market initiatives for CCEF. “From its solar-powered parking meters to its green schools and its ongoing efforts to promote clean energy in classrooms and among residents, the city is making a powerful statement about the importance of clean energy and is doing whatever it can to help lead our state to a cleaner, healthier, more energy independent future.” Wall added, “What’s particularly impressive is that the city is the first municipality in the state to meet its goal of purchasing 20 percent clean energy for its municipal facilities by 2010 – a full year ahead of schedule.”
Hartford presently has 231 customers enrolled in the CTCleanEnergyOptions program. The city can earn points towards additional clean energy systems by garnering more clean energy signups or having more local business and households install clean energy systems, such as solar PV.
The city is one of 39 Connecticut Clean Energy Communities statewide, which, collectively, have earned 220 kilowatts of solar PV systems.
Audria (Aud) Belton Benn, ING, 770-980-5715, 404-934-8743, or email@example.com
About the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF)
CCEF was created by the Connecticut General Assembly and is funded by the electric ratepayers. CCEF’s mission is to promote, develop and invest in clean energy sources for the benefit of Connecticut’s ratepayers in order to strengthen Connecticut’s economy, protect community health, improve the environment, and promote a secure energy supply for the state. CCEF is administered by Connecticut Innovations, a quasi-public authority. For more information on CCEF, please visit www.ctcleanenergy.com.