Connecticut’s Clean Energy Industry More Resilient During Pandemic Than That of Other States in Region, Nation

Industry is well-positioned for growth, according to state’s second Clean Energy Industry Report from the Joint Committee of the Energy Efficiency Board and the Connecticut Green Bank Board of Directors

Hartford, CT (Jan. 24, 2022) – Connecticut’s clean energy industry has remained resilient and is positioned for future growth, despite the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the recently released 2021 Connecticut Clean Energy Industry Report. This report highlights that Connecticut’s clean energy economy was more resilient than other states in the region and the nation overall. Total clean energy employment in Connecticut declined by only six percent in 2020 to 41,488 jobs; compared to a nationwide energy employment decrease of nine percent and neighboring state declines ranging from seven to 16 percent.

A webinar presenting the report’s findings to press, industry partners, and other stakeholders will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 2, from 12 to 1 pm. To register for the webinar, visit https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1737419007598298123.

“The pandemic required the energy efficiency industry to reimagine how to conduct business safely in Connecticut. I am proud of the quick and meaningful actions taken by DEEP, DECD, the Connecticut Green Bank, the Energy Efficiency Board, our clean energy contractors, and our utility program administrators, in close collaboration, placing Connecticut at the top of the pack regionally and nationally in preserving our critical clean energy workforce,” said Governor Ned Lamont.

“At a time when good paying jobs in a growth industry and continued efforts to combat the climate crisis are essential, this report demonstrates the resilience of our clean energy industry, supported by state initiatives such as EnergizeCT and CareerConneCT, and the potential to leverage federal ARPA and Bipartisan Infrastructure Act funding for further growth.”

With the majority of COVID-19 related job losses incurred in March through May 2020, the industry in Connecticut had steady, modest growth from June through December. Clean energy contributions to statewide Gross Regional Product (GRP) increased by two percent between 2019 and 2020, an overall increase of 14 percent since 2017. These GRP contributions totaled nearly $6.64 billion, almost three percent of the state’s GRP.

This is the second industry study produced by the Connecticut Green Bank, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Eversource, and United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas and Connecticut Natural Gas, subsidiaries of AVANGRID Inc., operating through the Joint Committee of the Energy Efficiency Board (EEB) and the Connecticut Green Bank Board of Directors.

“Reducing the negative impact of the pandemic on our clean energy industry required significant collaboration between government, industry and key stakeholders,” said Neil Beup, EEB chair. “Through these conversations and efforts, Connecticut was able to preserve much of the progress made by the clean energy sector over the last decade while maintaining a positive outlook for the future.”

Based on analysis from BW Research, employment in this report is broken out into five major technology sectors and clean energy-specific sub-technologies. The major clean energy sectors are: energy efficiency; clean energy generation; alternative transportation; clean grid and storage; and clean fuels.

Some other highlights include:

  • Throughout 2020, clean energy employment losses in Connecticut were lower compared to the overall statewide economy, the national clean energy labor market, and other clean energy economies in the Northeast, like Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
  • The number of firms conducting alternative transportation and clean grid and storage work increased between 2019 and 2020.
  • Alternative transportation firms grew in 2020 by nearly seven percent, led by job growth in the hybrid electric and electric vehicle sub-sectors.
  • Finding qualified workers continued to be an obstacle for firms in 2020, with fewer firms hiring, and more firms indicating difficulty hiring.
  • The clean energy workforce became more diverse in 2020, as the proportion of Hispanic/Latinx and Black/African American workers grew.

“This report delivers the good news that Connecticut is providing Clean Energy companies with the encouragement they need to remain robust and resilient through tough times. Despite the downturn triggered by the pandemic, Connecticut’s clean energy industry is suffering fewer job loses than the national average and their business leadership is staying positive and innovative,” said Lonnie Reed, Chair of the Connecticut Green Bank. “Continued support from state leaders combined with new policies and programs launching in 2022 will help grow the industry, reduce the energy burden on vulnerable communities and strengthen our ability to confront climate change.” 

The report also highlighted the ongoing need for more workers in the industry.

“While many firms were not hiring, those that were faced difficulty filling open positions,” said Brenda Watson, Chair of the Joint Committee of the Energy Efficiency Board and the Connecticut Green Bank and Executive Director of Operation Fuel. “The clean energy industry is helping our families and businesses reduce energy costs while creating well-paying jobs. We must work with many community-based organizations, to not only widen the jobs funnel, but develop a clear pathway for Hispanic, Black and women workers to increase their presence in the industry.”

To access the full report, please www.ctgreenbank.com/2021-CT-Clean-Energy-Industry-Report. To register for the webinar presenting the report’s findings on Wednesday, Feb. 2, from 12 to 1 pm, visit https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1737419007598298123.

 

About Energize CT and the Joint Committee:

Energize CT is an initiative of the Energy Efficiency Fund, the Connecticut Green Bank, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas and Connecticut Natural Gas, subsidiaries of AVANGRID Inc., and Eversource, with funding from a charge on customer energy bills. Learn more at www.energizect.com.

Joint Committee

Pursuant to Section 16-245m(d)(2) of the Connecticut General Statutes, the Joint Committee shall examine opportunities to coordinate programs and activities contained in the plan developed under Section 16-245n(c) (i.e., Comprehensive Plan of the Green Bank) with the programs and activities contained in the plan developed under Section 16-245m(d)(1) (i.e., Conservation and Load Management Plan), and to provide financing to increase the benefits of programs funded by the plan developed under Section 16-245m(d)(1) so as to reduce the long-term cost, environmental impacts, and security risks of energy in the state.

To support the Joint Committee, the following is a principal statement to guide its activities: The Energy Efficiency Board and the Connecticut Green Bank have a shared goal to implement state energy policy throughout all sectors and populations of Connecticut with continuous innovation towards greater leveraging of ratepayer funds and a uniformly positive customer experience.

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Connecticut Launches Statewide Battery Storage Program with Green Bank and Utilities to Jointly Administer Incentives to Improve Resilience and Benefit Ratepayers

Customer Incentives Now Available, Additional Incentives for Underserved Communities and Customers Hardest Hit by Severe Weather
 
(New Britain, CT – Jan. 18, 2022) – Connecticut’s Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) launches Energy Storage Solutions, a statewide electric storage program for all Eversource and United Illuminating (UI) residential, commercial, and industrial customers in an effort to foster a more reliable and resilient electric distribution system, especially for vulnerable communities.

Energy Storage Solutions will be administered by the Connecticut Green Bank, along with Eversource and UI. The nine-year program officially launched on January 1, 2022, and will continue through at least December 31, 2030.

Average upfront incentives for residential customers will initially be around $200 per kilowatt-hour (kWh), with a maximum per project incentive of $7,500. Commercial and industrial customers will also be eligible for upfront incentives, with a maximum incentive of 50% of the project cost. Residential, commercial, and industrial customers will all be eligible for performance incentive payments based on the average power an electric storage project contributes to the grid during critical periods.

Additional incentives will be available for those who would most benefit from increased resilience measures, such as low-income customers, customers in underserved communities, small businesses, and customers who historically experience the most frequent and longest duration storm-related outages.

“We are combatting the climate crisis and building our economy by making investments that promote environmental justice, healthier communities, affordable energy, and expanded jobs and opportunity. Adding a statewide electric storage program to our toolkit will play a vital role in these efforts and I thank the entire PURA team and our legislative partners for their leadership on this initiative,” said Governor Ned Lamont.

Development of the Energy Storage Solutions was informed by objectives outlined in Public Act (PA) 21-53, which establishes a statewide goal of deploying 1,000 megawatts (MW) of energy storage by year-end 2030. Governor Ned Lamont signed the unanimously bipartisan-supported legislation into law in June, making Connecticut the eighth U.S. state to issue an energy storage deployment target.

“Public Act 21-53 put Connecticut on the map as a potential leader in realizing the benefits of energy storage. The launch of Energy Storage Solutions builds on that vision by establishing a statewide comprehensive program that not only incorporates different applications and types of electric storage, but ensures the state is on a path to achieving 1,000 MW by 2030,” said PURA Chairman Marissa P. Gillett. “The Green Bank, working in collaboration with the utilities, will help ensure that our families and businesses, especially those within vulnerable communities, access the important benefits that electric storage provides in terms of resilience and modernizing the grid.”

“The strategic deployment of energy storage is a critical element in our planned transition to a more renewable energy future,” said Senate Chair of the Energy & Technology Committee Norm Needleman (D-Essex). “I am very pleased that the launch of the Energy Storage Solutions program capitalizes on the momentum generated by last year’s bipartisan legislation and I look forward to the resilience benefits it will bring to our communities.”

“The launch of this program is a step forward to achieving the long-term goal of strengthening our grid reliability and greenhouse gas reduction targets,” said House Chair of the Energy & Technology Committee David Arconti (D-Danbury).  “When there is more energy storage powered by renewables, fewer fossil fuel units will be needed for grid reliability, and that certainly is a great start.”

The Green Bank, Eversource Energy, and United Illuminating are partnering to bring customers Energy Storage Solutions overseen by PURA and paid for by electric ratepayers. Customers interested in learning more should visit www.energystoragect.com.

 

 

About PURA

The Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) is statutorily charged with regulating the rates and services of Connecticut’s investor owned electricity, natural gas, water and telecommunication companies and is the franchising authority for the state’s cable television companies.  In the industries that are still wholly regulated, PURA balances the public’s right to safe, adequate and reliable utility service at reasonable rates with the provider’s right to a reasonable return on its investment. PURA also keeps watch over competitive utility services to promote equity among the competitors while customers reap the price and quality benefits of competition and are protected from unfair business practices.

 

About the Green Bank

The Connecticut Green Bank is the nation’s first green bank. Its mission is to confront climate change and provide all of society a healthier and more prosperous future by increasing and accelerating the flow of private capital into markets that energize the green economy.

 

About Eversource

Eversource (NYSE: ES), celebrated as a national leader for its corporate citizenship, is the #1 energy company in Newsweek’s list of America’s Most Responsible Companies for 2021 and recognized as one of America’s Most JUST Companies. Eversource transmits and delivers electricity to 1.27 million customers in 149 cities and towns, provides natural gas to 246,000 customers in 74 communities, and supplies water to approximately 216,000 customers in 52 communities across Connecticut. Eversource harnesses the commitment of approximately 9,300 employees across three states to build a single, united company around the mission of safely delivering reliable energy and water with superior customer service. The #1 energy efficiency provider in the nation, the company is empowering a clean energy future in the Northeast, with nationally-recognized energy efficiency solutions and successful programs to integrate new clean energy resources like solar, offshore wind, electric vehicles and battery storage, into the electric system. For more information, please visit Eversource.com, and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. For more information on our water services, visit Aquarionwater.com.

 

About UI

United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas and Connecticut Natural Gas, subsidiaries of AVANGRID Inc. is a leading, sustainable energy company with $32 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states. AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving 3.2 million customers in New York and New England.

Solar Power to Provide Savings to East Windsor Housing Authority

The Housing Authority will save more than $130,000 in avoided energy costs over 20 years

Photos provided by Laura Scyocurka

East Windsor, CT (Oct. 12, 2021) – The Connecticut Green Bank announces the installation of a 39.6 kW solar photovoltaic system at Park Hill, a housing complex owned by the East Windsor Housing Authority. The low income, elderly and non-elderly property is comprised of 84 garden style apartments, three laundry rooms, and large community hall/office building. The Housing Authority has agreed to a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) in which they buy the electricity generated by the system at a fixed reduced cost. The PPA will save the Housing Authority approximately $130,000 on their electricity costs over the agreement term.

“It was a pleasure to work with the Green Bank on our solar project. The staff was very professional and efficient with the entire process including the coordination with the installation of the panels by Green Earth Roofing Solutions, who I would also recommend. The cost savings on our electric bill will certainly be beneficial to the Housing Authority and the residents we serve,” Linda Collins, Executive Director of the East Windsor Housing Authority.

“A power purchase agreement (PPA) works well for properties like a housing authority that cannot monetize the investment tax credits offered by the federal government,” said Mackey Dykes, Vice President of Financing Programs at the Green Bank. “The PPA model allows the housing authority to harness all the energy and cost savings benefits of solar energy.”

Inclusive Prosperity Capital (IPC), a non-profit, partners with Green Bank to own and maintain the system. IPC offers the PPA to multifamily, non-profit, and municipal customers outside Connecticut.

Connecticut Green Bank Announces 2021 Green Liberty Bond Issuance to Support State’s Green Energy Economy

Building upon the success of the 2020 issuance, the Connecticut Green Bank’s lower-dollar denomination bond is designed to encourage individuals to invest to confront climate change; Webinar April 15

 

Hartford, CT (April 10, 2021) – The Connecticut Green Bank is proud to announce its 2021 Green Liberty Bond issuance, which is anticipated to be available to retail and institutional investors on or about April 21, 2021. Green Liberty Bonds are lower-dollar denomination bonds (offered in $1,000 increments), making it easier for individual investors to consider an investment. The bond proceeds will be independently certified as financing infrastructure projects with climate and environmental benefits that will help strengthen our state’s green energy economy and create much needed jobs.

This is the Green Bank’s second Green Liberty Bond release, and builds upon the success of the July 2020 issuance, which raised $16,795,000 from retail and institutional investors in Connecticut and across the country. Retail demand was so strong that the supply of bonds could not meet the interest of those seeking to invest.

“We were very pleased by the response to our 2020 issuance of Green Liberty Bonds. In the midst of a global pandemic with so much uncertainty, the support of this new sub-category of green bonds that helps confront climate change was overwhelming,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank. “We hope even more retail investors in Connecticut and nationwide are able to invest in green infrastructure with us this year.”

Retail investors’ orders will be given first priority. Investors must have an account with one of the brokerage firms participating in the bond sale, or with another firm that can place an order through a brokerage firm participating in the bond sale. Interested retail investors who do not have a brokerage account should contact lead bond underwriter Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. or co-underwriter Ramirez & Co., Inc. to begin the process of opening a new account. Visit https://www.ctgreenbank.com/how-to-buy-green-liberty-bonds for their contact information.

To help inform residents about the Green Bank’s mission and programs, including the 2021 Green Liberty Bond, the Green Bank will host a webinar on Thursday, April 15 from 7 – 8 pm. (register here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5920454914183848720). The Preliminary Official Statement, notifications and bond information can be found at www.greenlibertybonds.com.

Modeled after the World War II Series-E bonds, which were purchased by more than 80 million Americans, Green Liberty Bonds are an opportunity for investors to take on the shared challenge of climate change and green infrastructure investment through the purchase of bonds. In November 2020, the Green Liberty Bond was honored by The Bond Buyer as the winner of Deal of the Year in the Innovative Financing category.

Like the previous issuance, these Green Liberty Bonds are expected to be labeled “Certified Climate Bonds” by the Climate Bonds Initiative, and compliance of the bond’s issuance with the Climate Bonds Standards will be verified by Kestrel Verifiers.

 

Low- and Moderate-Income Homeowners Offered 0% Interest Rate for Energy Upgrades through Smart-E Loan Program

Smart-E Loan Spring Special Offer has a 1.99% rate for all homeowners making energy improvements

 

Rocky Hill, CT (March 18, 2021) – As part of its Smart-E Loan Spring Special Offer, the Connecticut Green Bank announces 0% loan rates for Connecticut households that are at or below 80% Area Median Income (“AMI”) as defined by the “vulnerable communities” definition underneath Public Act 20-05 passed in the special session last fall. The Smart-E Loan unlocks financing for homeowners seeking to make home performance and energy upgrades, such as adding insulation, improving windows, updating heating, ventilation, and cooling (HVAC) systems with new boilers, furnaces, or heat pumps (air or ground source), installing electric vehicle charging stations, and adding battery storage to solar PV systems. Additionally, homeowners approved for assistance with crumbling foundations can qualify for 0% Smart-E loans. For all other homeowners, the rate will be lowered to 1.99%.

“The Smart-E Loan Spring Special is intended to further stimulate the recovery of the state’s clean energy economy by offering low interest rates to all homeowners for projects that reduce their energy cost burdens. By offering a special zero interest rate for lower income households, we hope to help these families reduce their energy bills, and improve the comfort of their home. With nearly 400 contractors registered in the Smart-E program, many local small businesses will also benefit from this promotion,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank.

The Smart-E Loan is made available through a network of nine participating local banks, credit unions, and a community development financial institution (CDFI) across the state.

Smart-E Loans through the Spring Special Offer are available for terms of 5, 7, and 10-years. Insulation, heat pump and window loans require completion of an Energize CT Home Energy Solutions (HES) assessment or proof of having completed an energy assessment within the last three years to qualify for the limited-time, reduced rate.

For more information please visit www.ctgreenbank.com/smart-e.

 

Connecticut Green Bank Presents 2020 Awards

PACEsetters and Smart-E Loan Top Performers recognized for their successful efforts in our communities

                              

Rocky Hill, CT (February 24, 2021) – In recognition of their contributions to the deployment of clean energy and demonstrated leadership in their industries in 2020, the Connecticut Green Bank has announced the honorees of their annual PACEsetter Awards and the Smart-E Loan Top Performers. Since 2012, the Green Bank has supported the creation of more than 23,000 job years and over 50,000 clean energy projects, thanks to our network of contractors, interested home- and building owners, and lending partners.

“Connecticut’s clean energy workforce has been strong and growing since 2015, until the pandemic caused a major setback. While the path to a full recovery will be long, our contractors are safely back to work — creating jobs, combatting climate change, and reducing energy burdens for families and building owners across the state. With this backdrop, we are particularly excited to recognize these projects and contractors that highlight the diverse ways our programs made a difference in our communities in 2020,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Green Bank. “From boutique inns, churches, and community centers, to our homes and neighborhoods, clean energy is powering our daily lives and helping us prosper. In the face of a challenging year, these leaders demonstrate that we can create a thriving future in Connecticut.”

PACEsetter Awards Recipients

The Connecticut Green Bank’s PACEsetter Awards acknowledge contractors, building owners and other stakeholders who are advancing the green energy movement through C-PACE, and whose leadership establishes a “pace” for others in their field to follow. The award winners are a driving force behind the success of the Green Bank’s Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) program, which has surpassed 330 closed loans and $184 million in total close project financing that are estimated to save $295 million in energy costs. These are the sixth annual PACEsetter Awards. 

C-PACE is an innovative program, administered by the Green Bank, which helps commercial, industrial, and non-profit property owners access affordable, long-term financing for qualifying energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements that are repaid through a voluntary assessment. As the program grows, more Connecticut businesses achieve lower energy costs and increase their bottom-line.

The Green Bank acknowledged both contractors and building owners across multiple categories for their work in 2020:

Outstanding Projects, 2020

Con Edison Solutions and Bridgeport Islamic Community Center, for their 75 kW solar installation at the Community Center, a Purchase Power Agreement repaid through C-PACE, which is producing electricity and helping to reduce costs.

 

Omega Church in New Haven and Complete Building and Mechanicals of Guilford, for their HVAC and lighting project – Complete Building and Mechanicals first C-PACE project – which will help the Church maintain safe, healthy operations year-round.

Marriot Residence Inn in Stamford, for their new construction project which is an outstanding example of the ability of C-PACE to support ground up new construction projects in the hospitality industry. This is also an example of Connecticut’s thriving open market for C-PACE, as Greenworks Lending, an active capital provider, made nearly $6.5 million in financing available to support the Marriot’s plan during COVID-19 and the economic challenges that it created.


West Lane Inn, a boutique 17-room inn in Ridgefield, and Eastern Mechanical Services, Inc. of Danbury, an HVAC contractor serving Fairfield County since 1985, for their project that removed an old oil heating system and replaced with efficient electric heat pumps that harness renewable energy (heat) from the environment, reducing costs and increasing guest comfort. This was the contractor’s first C-PACE project.

 

Marcus Communications, for a first-of-its-kind C-PACE project at their communications tower in Bolton. The solar arrays installed will provide clean and reliable energy power for communication and emergency services to a variety of customers and clients. This is the first time that C-PACE has been used to finance a project at a communications tower in the United States, according to PACENation, a national nonprofit association that advocates for PACE financing.

 

Accelerating PACE, 2020:

Verogy, a commercial solar developer headquartered in Hartford that has integrated C-PACE into their business model and became the first developer to offer their own C-PACE-backed Power Purchase Agreement, demonstrating a transformative approach to the market.

 

Smart-E Loan Top Performers

For 2020, the Green Bank is recognizing 17 Smart-E Loan Top Performers. In 2020, the Top Performers helped over 250 families across Connecticut make home energy improvements – allowing them to save money, reduce their carbon footprint, and live more comfortably in their homes. The Smart-E Loan offers homeowners no money down, low-interest financing for more than 40 qualifying projects that reduce energy use and lower utility costs. Since 2013, the Smart-E loan has enabled more than 4,000 families to make improvements with a projected lifetime energy cost savings over $70 million.

In partnership with nine participating local lenders, the Top Performers’ projects surpassed $4 million in closed Smart-E Loans. Financed projects included insulation and window upgrades, high efficiency heating and cooling solutions, rooftop solar PV, health and safety improvements, and more.

The Smart-E Loan Top Performers were chosen based on criteria including more than just closed loans. These contractors worked hard to integrate the Smart-E loan into their training and marketing, while providing high-level customer service. Despite the challenges created by the pandemic, these contractors were able to continue to increase access to clean energy solutions for homeowners.

The 2020 Top Performers (in alphabetical order; * denotes 2019 Top Performer recognition):

Connecticut Green Bank Announces 2021 Green Liberty Bond Poster Contest for High School & College Students

Six winning artists will receive a $1,000 Green Liberty Bond at a future issuance

 

Rocky Hill, CT (Feb. 22, 2021) – Attention Connecticut high school and college artists. The Connecticut Green Bank invites you to enter its 2021 Green Liberty Bond Poster Contest, where six entries will be selected as winners and receive a $1,000 Green Liberty Bond at a future insurance.

In July 2020, the Connecticut Green Bank issued its first Green Liberty Bond as part of the 50th anniversary celebration of Earth Day. Designed with U.S. War Bonds as an inspiration, the Green Bank used four posters as part of its marketing campaign to increase awareness. The 2020 Green Liberty Bond issuance generated nearly $17 million to support the Green Bank’s residential solar investment program, which helps homeowners add solar to their roofs.

Now, we are inviting current Connecticut high school and college/graduate students to submit posters tying together the themes of Green Bonds Us, Green Liberty Bonds, environmental justice, energy efficiency, renewable energy, and Connecticut.

Entries will be limited to the first 100 in each group (100 from high school students; 100 from college/graduate students), and six winners (three from high school entries; three from college/graduate entries) will be chosen. Winners will receive a $1,000 Green Liberty Bond (subject to full contest rules and requirements).

The contest runs through March 12, 2021 at 11:59 pm., and winners will be announced in late April in recognition of Earth Day.

Eligibility requirements, rules, and guidelines can be found at www.ctgreenbank.com/2021-green-liberty-bond-poster-contest.

Connecticut Green Bank Announces 2021 Webinar Series

“Promoting the Renewable Energy of Community” webinar series will focus on clean energy policy, financial innovation, social justice and cleantech progress

CT Green Bank 2021 WEBINAR series

Rocky Hill, CT (Feb. 16, 2021) – The Connecticut Green Bank announces its 2021  “Promoting the Renewable Energy of Community” webinar series.  Over the next year, these webinars will feature Green Bank staff and special guests speaking on topics such as clean energy policy, financial innovation, social justice and cleantech advances. The webinar series involves Connecticut Innovations as a technology partner, and the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) as a regulatory partner exploring innovative regulatory structures to support the implementation of public policy.

The “Energy Trends and Transformations” webinar will start the series on Tuesday, March 2, from 12 to 1:30 pm. Katherine Hamilton, co-host of popular podcast The Energy Gang, will lead a conversation exploring the rapidly shifting U.S. policy and business landscape for clean energy, cleantech and climate. From the Biden Administration to Congress, attendees will learn what policy movements are underway, and what these changes mean for states and for clean energy project activity.

The first four webinars have been announced and registration is open now. Dates, times, and links are below, and more details about the currently scheduled and soon-to-be-announced webinars can be found at https://www.ctgreenbank.com/2021webinarseries/

Webinar Dates and Registration Links:

Energy Trends and Transformations, Tuesday, March 2, from 12 – 1:30 pm EST

Environmental Finance, Wednesday, March 10, 12 – 1 pm EST

Financial Innovation: Ways to Invest in the Green Economy, Wednesday, April 14, 12 – 1 pm EST

Earth Day Conversation, Thursday, April 22, 12 – 1 pm EST

 More webinars will be announced in the coming weeks.

Historic Inn Turns Up the Heat: The West Lane Inn Replaces Old Oil Burning System with Energy Efficient Electric Heat Pumps

Using C-PACE financing through the Connecticut Green Bank, The West Lane Inn takes advantage of immediate energy and monetary savings

Ridgefield, CT (Jan. 27, 2021) – The innkeepers of The West Lane Inn in Ridgefield and the Connecticut Green Bank are pleased to announce the completion of a Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financed energy efficiency project at their inn, located at 22 West Lane. The project replaced an old oil-burning heat system with a new heat pump system designed to handle the heating and cooling needs of the 17-room historic property.

The innkeepers, Christine Carnicelli and Danille Petrie, who purchased the inn in the fall of 2019, are working hard to balance the colonial charm of the 1840s building with the need for modern amenities. As they are making cosmetic changes to the inn, they realized an upgrade was needed on their boiler.

“When guests come to stay at our inn, we want them to have the most relaxing, cozy experience possible. By adding a new heat pump system, we are able to keep rooms comfortable all year long,” said Christine. “The new system is also more energy efficient, and better for the environment, which fits with Ridgefield’s country surroundings.”

Eastern Mechanical Services, Inc. of Danbury, an HVAC contractor serving Fairfield County since 1985, installed the new equipment. The balance of the project cost, after utility incentives and owner equity, will be paid off over 10 years through the C-PACE assessment. This allows the owners to reap the energy saving benefits immediately while paying for the improvement over time. While the heat pumps will increase electricity usage, the system is replacing a more expensive oil system, which creates an overall energy cost savings that could exceed the project cost over the estimated useful life of the new equipment.

The new in-room units are much smaller (and more efficient) than the previous units.

“We are always excited when a new type of property, in this case a boutique inn, takes advantage of C-PACE to improve their energy efficiency. This is also a great example of progress toward the State’s goal of electrifying buildings,” said Mackey Dykes, Vice President of Financing Programs at the Connecticut Green Bank. “Commercial properties of all sizes should look at their HVAC systems for opportunities to unlock savings.”

While COVID-19 created new challenges for the innkeepers in 2020, they are hopeful about the future.

“We know that people are anxious to start travelling again and enjoying communities like Ridgefield. Our inn is ready to accommodate their stays and their events, especially in warmer months,” said Danille. “Our new heat pumps also provide air conditioning!”

Learn more about the West Lane Inn at https://westlaneinn.com/.  Learn more about the C-PACE program at www.cpace.com.

 

About the Connecticut Green Bank

The Connecticut Green Bank was established by the Connecticut General Assembly in 2011 as the nation’s first green bank. The Green Bank’s mission is to confront climate change and provide all of society a healthier, more prosperous future by increasing and accelerating the flow of private capital into markets that energize the green economy. This is accomplished by leveraging limited public resources to scale-up and mobilize private capital investment into Connecticut. In 2017, the Connecticut Green Bank received the Innovations in American Government Award from the Harvard Kennedy School Ash Center for Democratic Governance and innovation for their “Sparking the Green Bank Movement” entry. For more information about the Connecticut Green Bank, please visit www.ctgreenbank.com

 About the West Lane Inn

The West Lane Inn, built in 1849, combines the charm of an intimate country inn with many conveniences of a hotel. For those seeking a special getaway, we are situated in the historic district of Ridgefield, CT, one of New England’s most scenic colonial towns. With 17 beautifully appointed rooms, guests may choose from three different room layouts all with charming decor and private bath.

Communications Tower in Bolton First Known in U.S. to Use C-PACE Financing to Install Solar Array

Environmentally-conscious tower owner Marcus Communications will benefit from significant energy savings

Rocky Hill, CT (Dec. 14, 2020) – The Connecticut Green Bank is pleased to announce the closing of Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing for the installation of a ground-mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) system at a 450-foot telecommunications tower owned by Marcus Communications LLC. Located in Bolton, the tower and support equipment provide communication services, including emergency services, to a wide array of customers and clients. This is the first time that C-PACE has been used to finance a project at a communications tower in the United States, according to PACENation, a national nonprofit association that advocates for PACE financing

“As the first use of PACE on a communications tower, this innovative project is a model for how PACE can be used to increase the sustainability of our critical infrastructure. We applaud the work of the Green Bank in completing this project and look forward to seeing more deals like this one,” said Colin Bishopp, Executive Director of PACENation.

The tower was originally constructed in 1995 and extended in 2005, going from a 300-ft to 450-ft, to become the tallest tower in Eastern Connecticut. In recent years, leaders at Marcus Communications have begun an initiative at their office to minimize the company’s impact on the environment through improvements such as installing energy efficient lighting, solar panels, heating and cooling systems, and by providing free electric vehicle charging to employees, vendors and customers.

“We continue to be proactive in our efforts to be environmentally responsible and actively pursue solutions and enhancements that support that vision,” said Bruce Marcus, CTO, Marcus Communications LLC. “This solar project is a great example. We are proud of the work we are doing to move the world towards renewable energy.”

The 76 kW-AC solar PV system will be installed by Marcus Communications with guidance from Harness the Sun LLC of Lebanon. The project is estimated to save the company more than $740,000, over the 25-year effective useful life of the panels. The total project cost is approximately $250,000.

“It’s exciting to see new types of properties taking advantage of C-PACE financing to improve their energy efficiency or add renewables,” said Mackey Dykes, Vice President of Financing Programs at the Connecticut Green Bank. “We hope that other communications companies follow the example that the team at Marcus has set.”

To see a video of the installation, please visit https://youtu.be/AXQT–XNxec

About the Connecticut Green Bank

The Connecticut Green Bank was established by the Connecticut General Assembly in 2011 as the nation’s first green bank. The Green Bank’s mission is to confront climate change and provide all of society a healthier, more prosperous future by increasing and accelerating the flow of private capital into markets that energize the green economy. This is accomplished by leveraging limited public resources to scale-up and mobilize private capital investment into Connecticut. In 2017, the Connecticut Green Bank received the Innovations in American Government Award from the Harvard Kennedy School Ash Center for Democratic Governance and innovation for their “Sparking the Green Bank Movement” entry. For more information about the Connecticut Green Bank, please visit www.ctgreenbank.com

About Marcus Communications

Marcus Communications was founded in 1969 in Connecticut by owner, CTO, and LMR industry innovator Bruce Marcus. While the technology from 1969 to today has changed completely, our core mission remains the same. We manage your communications with an innovative array of technical solutions. Over the years, we’ve helped thousands of customers achieve better safety and efficiency by supercharging their communications. When you choose Marcus, you’re not choosing just any communications company. Your choosing the premiere leader in communications. Your choosing a company that hires veterans and gives back to the community, supporting events like the Hartford Marathon or the Special Olympics. You’re choosing the leaders who work tirelessly to research and develop cutting-edge solutions for its customers. To learn more, please visit https://www.marcuscommunications.com/.