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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Free money for me!

By Tom Ferrio

This may not be as good as having the town purchase land to extend my back yard but I'm writing to send out a big "thanks" to everyone for your contribution!

As repayment I will be writing a series of articles about it for your reading enjoyment. 

At the September Town Council meeting, our Town Administrator, Bill DiLibero, announced that the State was planning to accept proposals for green energy projects. The funding was coming from Federal stimulus money that was going unused and risked being lost. I wrote here how Ateris Renewables was one of the companies putting together a proposal.

We contacted Alteris about this and within days we had signed a contract to be a part of their proposal.

About a month later the winning proposals were announced and the Alteris project, with us as one installation, was one of them.

Between the grant and the Federal tax credit we will get about 60% off the normal system price. Still, a person must feel a need to make a statement about the importance of green energy to do this. Whether this will ever make financial sense depends on how energy prices turn out 5 and 10 years in the future. At least with the grant and tax credit it is not an obviously money-losing situation.

And, like all developing technologies, some buyers need to step up so that the industry can get the experience and fund the research to drive costs down.

A few days ago we got a phone call that we should expect to see a truck next Tuesday with our solar panels and equipment and that the installation will start that day or soon after.

To begin the documentation of this process, here is the roof it will be installed on.