Amherst’s 174 systems and 1.2 MW of contracted capacity are “…beyond our wildest expectations,” said Amherst Solar Coach Jeanette Tokarz. Dr. Tokarz is quoted in the DOER and Mass CEC press release as saying that, “The Amherst residents have a very deep commitment to and enthusiasm toward green energy.”
The program ran from February – June of this year and offered discounted rates for solar installations on town residences and businesses. The additional discount was made possible through the bulk purchase of the solar photovoltaic systems through a single installation company.
The Town’s chosen installation company, Northeast Solar, was equally pleased with the results. “As a local installer we immediately made a connection with the residents of the community. The town’s residents recognized the economic advantage of buying local and fully supported the program. Over the next twenty years the Town of Amherst and surrounding area will realize over eight million dollars in economic benefit and the reduction of an estimated 35,000,000 pounds of CO2 from the atmosphere.”
Mr. Garrison added that special recognition should be made to acknowledge Don and Ron Laverdiere, owners of the Amherst Office Park, and staff member Clare Bertrand. “The team worked very hard to participate in the program and purchased the largest system - 82kW”.
Amherst Town Manager, John Musante stated that “We owe a great deal of gratitude to the Town’s Solar Team that consisted of residents who volunteered their time over the past several months. They are Solar Coach, Dr. Jeannette Tokarz, Anne Perkins, Nat Larson, Tim Holcomb, Susie Lowenstein, Carol Lewis, Peg Matthews-Nilsen and Sig Nilsen.”
The Town is planning a celebration in the Town Room of Town Hall on Tuesday, July 29th from 6-8 PM to mark the end of the program and in recognition of its great success. Refreshments and non-alcoholic beverages will be served. For more information or to RSVP please contact Sustainability Coordinator, Stephanie Ciccarello at (413) 259-3149 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.