There's nothing I love better than watching my meter roll backwards on a sunny day.

Solar Power Posts

Solar Power for Maine

There are many different ways to use solar energy: passive solar, solar thermal (for heat), photovoltaic (for electricity), small-scale, grid-scale. Tell us what you are using the sun for, and read about what others are doing with the sun's power here.

Solar collectors on the Cumberland Community Communications Center by Revisoin Solar

Solar collectors on Cumberland County Communications Center by Revision Energy

 
 

Solar Power Blog Posts

03/12/2017 - 1:28pm

A solar eruptive prominence as seen in extreme UV light on March 30 2010 with Earth superimposed for a sense of scale image Credit to NASA and SDOYou may have heard of solar storms in earth science or geophysics classes in school, right?

03/11/2017 - 5:45pm

On March 3, 2017, the Environmental and Energy Technology Council of Maine hosted a forum in Augusta, entitled, “Playing Matchmaker- Aligning Energy Challenges with Compatible Policies”. The forum addressed the following questions: What are the most important energy challenges facing the State of Maine?

02/20/2017 - 3:28pm

 New England Grassroots Environment Fund logoThe New England Grassroots Environment Fund is offering Grow Grants of up to $3,500 for community sustainability initiatives across New England and the application deadline for this round is March 15, 2017. 

02/05/2017 - 6:12pm

Laney Brown, VP of Grid Modernization Strategy from Modern Grid Partners photo by Kay MannThe sixth annual Efficiency Maine Symposium had a very long name this year: “modernization of the electricity grid and opportunities for distributed energy resources”.

02/04/2017 - 9:22pm

smart meter photo by Kay MannOn January 31, 2017, the Maine Public Utilities Commission issued a decision on proposed rule changes regarding customer net energy billing. The following information comes from the MPUC’s press release on the announcement.

12/11/2016 - 12:56pm

Nathan Smith Darrell Henry Jason Smith and David Meyer speak on energy policy panel at E2Tech Expo 2016 photo by Kay MannOn November 17, 2016, E2Tech hosted its second annual expo at the University of Southern Maine in Portland.

11/13/2016 - 3:39pm

Island image courtesy of Maine Office of TourismEnergy costs on Maine's islands dwarf those on the mainland. Now, the Spark!

11/13/2016 - 1:23pm

Image from 2015 E2Tech Expo courtesy of E2TechThe second annual E2TECH EXPO on November 17 will be the premier energy event of the year! The U.S.

11/12/2016 - 5:40pm

Eric Johnson Director of External Affairs for ISO New England and Ben DAntonio Counsel & Analyst for the New England States Committee on Electricity or NESCOE photo by Kay MannThe New England electricity system is changing, with natural gas power generation plants beginning to

Solar Power News

Seven Maine Businesses Receive REAP Grants for Energy Improvements
03/12/2017 - 4:16pm

USDA logo courtesy of USDAUSDA Rural Development Acting State Director Tommy R. Higgins announced on March 2, 2017 that seven Maine businesses have been selected to receive Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grants totaling $77,500 for the purchase and installation of solar energy systems and energy efficiency improvements. Here is the list of recipients:

FEDCO Seeds, Inc.
Harpswell Freezers, LLC.
Power Gripps, USA, Inc.
Solar Center, LLC
Trippcrest Farm
Waldoboro Environmental Park, Inc.
Wilbur B. Bradbury, dba Bradbury Maple

Read what they are going to do with the money on the USDA’s Maine page.

USDA logo courtesy of USDA.

5-Megawatt Solar Farm Comes Online in Madison
01/08/2017 - 2:21pm

grid-scale solar image courtesy of NREL.On December 29, 2016, Madison Electric Works announced that its municipally-owned solar farm is ready to start powering homes and businesses. The project in Somerset County, being called the largest in Maine, was built and is owned by Ohio-based IGS Solar. ISG will sell the power to MEW at 7.99 cents per kWh for the first six years, at which time the utility may decide to buy the plant.

Madison Electric Works is a department of the Town of Madison, serving electric customers in the downtown area, Madison Business Gateway, and Backyard Farms. It is a Member of North East Public Power Association (NEPPA).

Read it all in the Morning Sentinel.

Grid-scale solar image courtesy of NREL.

MPUC Defers Decision on Net Metering Rule Changes
01/08/2017 - 1:51pm

Photo of Mark Vannoy courtesy of the Maine Public Utilities CommissionOn December 19, 2016, the Maine Public Utilities Commission announced a delay in handing down a decision about a controversial set of proposed rule changes to Maine’s net metering law.

Commission Chairman Mark Vannoy was quoted as saying, ”This is an important rule and more time is needed to consider the proposed rule in light of the comments we received to ensure that the rule treats all ratepayers in a fair manner. It remains clear that changes in technology and costs of small renewable generation, particularly solar photo-voltaic, require a careful review of the current rule and potential modifications."

The 128th Maine Legislature, which has just opened it 2017 session, will also be considering changes to net metering laws.

Read more in Mainebiz and read the announcement on the MPUC website.

Photo of Mark Vannoy courtesy of the Maine Public Utilities Commission.

Almanac Publisher Harnesses the Sun
10/16/2016 - 1:36pm

artist rendering of future solar array at Geiger in Lewiston Maine Image courtesy of Geiger and HarrimanGeiger, the family-owned publisher of the “Old Farmers’ Almanac” celebrated its 200th consecutive issue this year by announcing some changes to its headquarters in Lewiston, Maine.

The company announced in September that it plans to invest $12 million to convert its former manufacturing space in Lewiston into a distribution center and offices. The renovated facility will have up to 90% of its power needs met by a 620-panel, ground-mounted solar array.

The 105,000 square-foot facility will be certified at the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design's (LEED) "gold" level and will qualify as a Maine Advanced Building. Geiger also anticipates hiring 25 to 50 new employees over the next three to five years.

Read more in Mainebiz and the PPAI Publications website.

Image credit: courtesy of Geiger/Harriman.

Twin Solar Arrays to Appear on Closed Landfills
09/17/2016 - 7:14pm

solar panels image courtesy of wikipediaBoth Portland and South Portland are moving forward with plans to install solar power plants atop closed landfills.

On September 7, 2016, the Portland City Council voted unanimously to authorize its city manager to negotiate a power purchase agreement (or PPA) with Revision Energy to build a 660-killiwatt solar array on the Ocean Ave. landfill. The array is expected to save the city more than $3.2 million in energy costs over its lifetime.

The city of South Portland is planning an identical array for its closed landfill. The joint negotiation by the two cities with the installer has served to lower costs for both projects. The initial $150,000 that each city will invest over the first six years of its project is expected to be paid back within 10 years through energy savings.

Read about the recent Portland vote in the Portland Press Herald.

Read about South Portland’s progress in the Portland Press Herald.

Solar Power Job and RFP Posts

12/31/2020 - 11:00pm

Green States Energy is offering up to 7,100 megawatt-hours per year of solar energy and/or the PJM-GATS or M-RETS registered solar renewable energy credits (SRECs). The SRECs originate from two separate projects that meet Ohio Alternative Energy Resource Standard and S.B. 221 requirements.