Ecology Park

First Selectman James B. Cosgrove announced today that he has retained the services of the law firm of Murtha Cullina LLP to facilitate a comprehensive Request for Proposals for the Town related to a possible large-scale solar array installation at the site of the former town landfill.  In addition, the firm will assist the Town in submitting a bid for the solar project into the upcoming ZREC/LREC auction to be conducted by Eversource (formerly The Connecticut Light & Power Company).  If selected by Eversource, the Town would sell the renewable energy credits produced by the solar array to the utility.  Ultimately, if the Town moves forward with the solar project the firm will also assist with the negotiation of contracts related to the project including a power purchase agreement and operation and maintenance agreement with the selected solar developer of the project.  

“The Town has considered this initiative in the past but it has never materialized,” Cosgrove said.  “If successful this project will be appropriate site development at the former landfill and generate significant savings to the taxpayer in the form of lower utility payments.”

A variety of steps must take place prior to operation, including: local approvals, selection of the project under the state’s ZREC/LREC auction program, and successful acceptance of the project into the State’s Municipal Virtual Net Metering Program.  “This is a very complicated and technical process and after a review of our options, I am confident that the selection of Murtha Cullina to lead this project is sound one,” Cosgrove said.  Cosgrove noted that Murtha has significant experience in managing successful municipal solar array projects around the state. “We considered going this alone or directly with a power provider,” Cosgrove stated, “but concluded that this is the best and most efficient option for pursuing the project.” 

The project will be led by Attorney Paul R. Michaud at Murtha Cullina.  “We’re pleased to have the opportunity to assist the Town in developing a meaningful project that will provide substantial utility savings,” Michaud said. Attorney Michaud chairs Murtha Cullina’s Renewable Energy Practice Group.  He has significant experience with the transactional, regulatory and legislative aspects of renewable energy and microgrid project development.   

(10) comments

Anonymous

Time and money would be better spent working with Eversource to replace all the street lights with L.E.D. bulbs, they use much less power than the current sodium vapor bulbs. Also L.E.D. give off white light not orange.

Marcintosh

We could do both . . . While the solar panels are a big project involving a fair amount of time and effort, changing the street lights to LED's could be done incrementally. Either way I think they're both great ideas.

Still happy to live here.

Anonymous

We should all thank Peg Hall for her vision and guidance to make this beautiful mountain a reality! Chess Brockwell

Anonymous

James B. Cosgrove

Anonymous

Exactly.

Anonymous

I sure hope that the solar panels won't disrupt the views from Ecology Park! What a wonderful vista for residents to enjoy.

Th proposed panels will be on the south facing slope of hill, no worries on blocking the great views.

Anonymous

What would we do without you Ray?

Anonymous

The panels will make great targets for rock throwing.

Anonymous

While the project is admirable, I have spent significant time crunching the numbers for a 500kw project. for my own business. The engineers/installer will attempt to sell the project as a revenue stream. It is only a revenue stream after the initial cost is covered which was 25 years. 2nd, the maintenance is about 10% of the total cost. Third, the panels become less efficient over time. The manufacturer will supply the efficiency chart. Fourth, in my current area, the electricity company will charge a distribution cost for accepting the power. Lastly, the installer will inflate the cost by the tax credits offered. I highly advise those involved to remain unemotional during this process as the risk/reward profile isn't great. Now many towns have decided to move forward with this type of project which makes sense because it feels good and if they are wrong which many have been but wont admit to the mistake, the risk falls to the taxpayer.

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