Hopkinton Reaches Lowest Price Tier of Solar Energy Program

Oct 22, 2012 –
Boston

Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) CEO Alicia Barton McDevitt today announced Hopkinton residents and businesses have qualified for the lowest pricing tier available under the Solarize Massachusetts Program (Solarize Mass) and will receive prices well below rates for traditional sources of energy.

As a result of Solarize Mass, the average Hopkinton participant who enters into a contract to buy solar electricity will now pay an average of 5 cents per kilowatt hour. This rate is lower than the average statewide price of 15 cents per kilowatt hour for traditional energy sources, which are a mix of coal-fired, nuclear or natural gas generation.

Residents and businesses have until October 31 to sign contracts to participate in the bulk purchasing program.

“I hope Hopkinton’s renewable energy leadership will inspire residents in this community and beyond to take advantage of this program that not only cuts energy costs, but creates local jobs,” said MassCEC CEO and Executive Director Alicia Barton McDevitt.

Under the leadership of Governor Deval Patrick, Massachusetts set a goal of achieving 250 megawatts of solar by 2017. As a result of the Solarize Mass program and other incentives, the state is more than halfway to its goal – with 162 megawatts of solar installed to date, the equivalent of powering 25,623 homes for a year.

To date, a number of residents and businesses in Hopkinton have banded together to participate in the program, contracting 38 solar systems for a total capacity of 252 kilowatts (kW).

Solarize Mass, which is available in 17 Massachusetts communities including Hopkinton, offers five tiers of discounted pricing based on the total solar capacity contracted under the program. As more residents and businesses contract for solar, the price for solar energy drops. Solarize Mass is administered by MassCEC and the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER).

“This is a bright day for Hopkinton residents and businesses,” said DOER Commissioner Mark Sylvia. “Solarize Mass and the 103 Green Communities are helping spread solar power across the 340 of 351 communities that now have at least one state-supported solar electricity project.”

The average Massachusetts household uses 667 kilowatt hours per month, equivalent to an average $100 monthly bill for traditional energy sources. By installing a solar electric system under the Solarize program, Hopkinton homeowners entered into contracts to purchase solar would pay $33.

A committee of Hopkinton volunteers and municipal officials selected a partnership between Framingham-based SolarFlair.