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Hanover, Lebanon celebrate solar in push toward renewable energy



Valley News Staff Writer
Wednesday, August 21, 2019

HANOVER — Here comes the sun, into the municipal energy-consumption portfolios of two more Upper Valley towns.

On Thursday afternoon at 4, Hanover officials and representatives of ReVision Energy are scheduled to ceremonially celebrate recently installed solar arrays on the roofs of Town Hall and the water-treatment plant above Mink Brook.

Combined, the town expects the 270 grid-tied panels to generate more than 85 kilowatts of electricity a year, toward its goal of running on 100% renewable energy by 2050.

“The one on Town Hall has been up and running since May,” Town Manager Julia Griffin said Wednesday of the building’s 52-panel array. “The one on the treatment plant just came online in the last two weeks.”

The ribbon-cutting for Hanover’s rooftop installations comes a week after Lebanon and ReVision formalized a “power-purchase agreement.” The pact calls for ReVision to build solar arrays at eight city properties and for Lebanon to buy the power generated for five years, at the end of which it would have the option to buy the infrastructure.

With a goal of generating almost 820 kilowatts a year across all eight properties, the project is expected to begin construction in the next couple of weeks at City Hall; at the public-works administrative offices and maintenance buildings east of downtown; at the police station on Poverty Lane; and at the Kilton Library, the city landfill and recycling center, and the wastewater treatment plant in West Lebanon.

Hanover recently signed a letter of intent for ReVision to erect another 2,000 panels on the ground at the town reservoir, which ReVision would own under an arrangement similar to Lebanon’s for the first five years.

That installation, which ReVision outreach chief Christina Zlotnick said is expected by year’s end, would generate another 700 kilowatts, effectively offsetting about 41 tons of carbon pollution a year.

On the residential side of Hanover’s energy-conservation efforts, Griffin said that since the spring, the town has connected solar installers with 54 homeowners for site visits, under its Solarize 2.0 project.

“The federal tax deduction for installing solar goes down on Jan. 1,” Griffin said. “We hope that will be an incentive for some to sign contracts.”

David Corriveau can be reached at dcorriveau@vnews.com and at 603-727-3304.