Weekly Feature

2017-07-12 / Editorial

Town of Tonawanda aims to save energy costs

Through its Solarize campaign, the Town of Tonawanda hopes to increase its number of solar rooftops, which can have a positive effect on the environment.

The campaign, supported by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority under the NY-Sun Initiative, aims to increase the installation of solar systems as a renewable energy source and to help make solar technology more affordable for town residents.

According to a prepared statement, Solarize is designed to reduce customer acquisition costs and other common barriers to promote greater adoption of solar energy.

Local governments must complete four of the following 10 high impact actions to earn a Clean Energy Community designation and qualify to apply for grant funding. According to NYSERDA, the 10 actions in addition to Solarize include: benchmarking; clean energy upgrades; LED technology; clean fleets; unified solar permit; energy code enforcement training; Climate Smart Communities certification; Community Choice Aggregation program; and Energize NY financing.

The town is currently seeking proposals from solar electric installers who are interested in serving as designated installers of residential solar panel systems.

The selected installers will then collaborate with the town to hold a multi-month community marketing and outreach campaign with the goal of securing residential contracts for solar installations. The town is planning its launch event for late summer.

According to the statement, the goals of the campaign include: Bring together a critical mass of educated, engaged solar customers. Reduce the cost of solar installations for all solar participants.

Raise awareness and increase the adoption of solar energy.

Simplify the procurement and incentive process for residents interested in installing solar electric systems.

The town will soon be looking for volunteers who have already installed solar on their homes to give testimonials. The initiative is a great way to get involved because it can help make Tonawanda a more sustainable place to live while providing opportunities for its residents.

It’s also a way to lower your carbon footprint and promote a cleaner world.

A website for the Solarize campaign will be launched as well. For more information, visit www.nyserda.ny.gov.

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