Residents, Town Officials Invited to Attend Grand Opening/Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at Brand-New Solar Farm

(Saugus, MA) October 30, 2017 – Town Manager Scott C. Crabtree is pleased to invite Saugus residents, Town officials, employees, and business owners to attend a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the grand opening and activation of the Town’s new solar farm along with developer, Ameresco. The solar installation is located behind the Public Works at 515 Main Street. The ceremony will take place on Monday, October 30, 2017 at 5 p.m. at the site.

The solar farm, comprised of 5,000 solar panels and installed on a capped landfill site, will provide electricity cost savings for many municipal Town buildings, the Lincoln Avenue sewer pumping station, and apply towards some of the Town traffic lights, and street lights.

The farm will generate a projected 2 million kilowatt hours per year in net metering credits that will be credited to Town of Saugus electrical accounts. The net metering credits will generate a projected $150,000 per year in electricity cost savings to the Town, and a projected overall savings to the Town over 20 years of over $3 million. Additionally, this project will generate $80,000 in additional new revenue annual to the Town through a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) of $40,000 and a $40,000 annual land lease payment.

“We are thrilled to add a solar farm to Saugus,” said Town Manager Crabtree. “The farm will help negate energy costs for our residents, as well serve as a source of increased revenue to support local projects and initiatives. This was an idea that was first brought forward to my office by Robert Long who was then Town Moderator.”

Plans for the project began in 2014 when the Town was awarded a $12,500 grant from the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources to retain a consultant to assist the town in finding a company to erect ground-mounted solar panels on the landfill off of 515 Main Street. The Town put out a Request for Proposal and ultimately selected a leading renewable energy/energy efficiency company, Ameresco. The Town partnered with Ameresco under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) structure, where Ameresco designs, builds, permits, owns and operates the solar farm for the full 20 year period of the PPA.

“Ameresco is honored to have had the opportunity to work with the Town of Saugus on this project, one that is creating significant environmental benefits as well as providing cost savings for the Town,” said Jim Walker, Vice President, PV Grid Tie, Ameresco. “Ameresco will also be working with the Town to allow public access to a web-enabled project dashboard that will provide cumulative and real-time production information that will be valuable educational information for residents and students.”

In its first year, the system is expected to generate over 2 million kilowatt hours of electricity. This will offset the equivalent greenhouse gas emissions of 319 cars driven for one year, or the electricity use in one year of over 220 homes.

“I am thrilled to have a Solar Farm within our community, as it demonstrates the Town’s commitment to responsible energy consumption and cost-saving measures for the residents of Saugus,” said Board of Selectmen Chair Debra Panetta. The new solar farm follows several other green initiatives the Town has undertaken, such as acquiring two brand-new Nissan Leaf S Hatchback electric vehicles and an electric charging station through grant funding and incentives. The vehicles are used by the Department of Public Works and Parking Enforcement Department, and help provide energy security, improve fuel economy, lower fuel costs, and reduce emissions.

The ceremony will take place at the Solar Farm, located behind the Department of Public Works at 515 Main Street, Saugus, on Monday, October 30, 2017 at 5 p.m.

For more information, contact the Town Manager’s office at 781-231-4111.

About The Town of Saugus

The Town of Saugus, Massachusetts, is a family-friendly, historic neighborhood Town located along the north shore, ten miles north of Boston. First settled in 1629, Saugus is home to historic sites, top-tier public services, and a thriving business community. Strong community support, a forward-thinking approach to town government, rich recreational opportunities, affordable choices, and easy access to all the amenities that Boston has to offer – they all contribute to make Saugus a Town where businesses flourish and families make their home.

For more information about the Town of Saugus, visit www.saugus-ma.gov.

Follow Town Manager Scott C. Crabtree on Twitter and Instagram at @scottccrabtree, and visit his blog at www.saugustownmanager.tumblr.com.

About Ameresco, Inc.

Founded in 2000, Ameresco, Inc. (NYSE:AMRC) is a leading independent provider of comprehensive services, energy efficiency, infrastructure upgrades, asset sustainability and renewable energy solutions for businesses and organizations throughout North America and Europe. Ameresco’s sustainability services include upgrades to a facility’s energy infrastructure and the development, construction and operation of renewable energy assets. Ameresco has successfully completed energy saving, environmentally responsible projects with Federal, state and municipal governments, healthcare and educational institutions, housing authorities, and commercial and industrial customers. With its corporate headquarters in Framingham, MA, Ameresco has more than 1,000 employees providing local expertise in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit www.ameresco.com.

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Contacts: 

Ameresco: CarolAnn Hibbard, 508-661-2264, news@ameresco.com