Mansfield Celebrates Second Solar Array at Edwin O. Smith High School

Energy Education Team and student Cool-It Team help boost clean energy support, signups

Rocky Hill, Conn., May 19, 2011 — A dedication ceremony was held today in Mansfield, Conn., to celebrate the installation of the new 4-kilowatt (kW) solar photovoltaic (PV) system on the roof of Edwin O. Smith High School. The solar PV system, which the Town earned through the Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program of the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF), was installed by Sunlight Solar Energy Inc. This was the second earned solar PV system to be installed at the high school; the first, a 3-kW system, was installed in 2008.

Additionally, CCEF provided funding for a special Heliotronics data monitoring system at the high school. This system provides real-time data from the solar array to students at Edwin O. Smith High School and other schools throughout the state as part of CCEF’s Learning for Clean Energy Innovation program.

Mansfield’s Energy Education Team, a citizens’ committee chaired by Dan Britton, and the Edwin O. Smith High School student Cool-It Team have been driving forces in boosting clean energy awareness and CTCleanEnergyOptionsSM signups, helping Mansfield earn the solar arrays at the school. The Energy Education Team has hosted several information sessions about clean energy and energy efficiency incentive programs such as the CT Solar Lease Program, On-Site Renewable Distributed Generation Program, Solar Thermal Incentive Program and Home Energy Solutions program. It has also promoted CTCleanEnergyOptions signups at a number of local events including Earth Day festivities and farmers markets. Additionally, students on the Cool-It Team have promoted signups at Mansfield’s Election Day polling sites.

In addition to being a leader in the Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program, Mansfield is a leader in the adoption of solar PV technology. Town leaders have supported the installation of solar PV systems on six municipal buildings: Edwin O. Smith High School, Mansfield Community Center, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield Senior Center and two fire stations. Many residents have also installed solar PV systems at their homes.

At the dedication ceremony for the 4-kW solar array at Edwin O. Smith High School, remarks were made by representatives from the Town of Mansfield, Edwin O. Smith High School, student Cool-It Team, Sunlight Solar Energy and CCEF.

“I am proud to be mayor of a town that is so committed to clean energy solutions and use,” said Mayor Betsy Paterson of Mansfield.

As of December 31, 2010, Mansfield had earned a total of 548 clean energy points from CCEF. Mansfield earned one point for each of the 446 customers enrolled in the CTCleanEnergyOptions program and three points for each of the 34 clean energy installations in town. Mansfield also earned two bonus kilowatts under the Connecticut Clean Energy Communities program by surpassing 5 percent household participation in the CTCleanEnergyOptions program. The clean energy points and bonus award enabled the Town to earn 7 kW of solar PV from CCEF.

The Town can earn points toward additional clean energy system kilowatts by garnering more clean energy signups or having more local businesses and households install clean energy systems, such as solar PV, solar thermal or geothermal.

Matt Hart, Mansfield town manager, said, “The Town of Mansfield is excited about receiving the second solar array and we would like to thank our residents, our energy education team and the EOS Cool-It Team for making this happen. We would also like to acknowledge the staff at the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund for their work to coordinate this successful and important program. The Town’s participation in the Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program is an important component in our efforts to achieve our sustainability goals and objectives.”

Looking to the future, Mansfield plans to strengthen its commitment to clean energy. In the next three years, Mansfield will seek to dramatically increase residential enrollments in the CTCleanEnergyOptions program through its participation in the Neighbor to Neighbor Energy Challenge (N2N), a 14-town community energy savings program led by CCEF that was launched in March. Additionally, Mansfield’s Energy Education Team has organized a series of workshops focused on energy efficiency and clean energy; the first, “Do It Yourself Solar,” will be held on June 6 at the Mansfield Public Library.

Mansfield became a Connecticut Clean Energy Community in 2006. It is one of 53 Connecticut Clean Energy Communities statewide that collectively have earned 303 kilowatts of solar PV systems from CCEF. For more information about these and other Connecticut communities, visit the Program Progress Reports page on CCEF’s Web site or the general Communities section, www.ctcleanenergy.com/communities.

“The town of Mansfield has demonstrated true leadership in its commitment to clean energy,” said Bob Wall, director of energy market initiatives for CCEF. “By steadily increasing signups to CT Clean Energy Options and installation of solar energy systems, the town can continue to earn more gifts that will keep on giving.”

Source: Connecticut Clean Energy Fund @ http://www.ctcleanenergy dot com