FRANKLIN, MA, Nov. 13— Congressman Joe P. Kennedy III joined state and local leaders today to unveil a new 1.3 megawatt solar system at Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School in Franklin, Mass. The newly finished system is expected to generate more than $1 million in energy cost savings for the school over the next 20 years and will provide more than 1,000 students with an exciting opportunity to learn about the environmental and cost benefits of solar.
Nonprofit energy buying consortium PowerOptions and renewable energy development company SunEdison worked together to bring the solar system to fruition. PowerOptions leveraged the collective buying power of its Solar Program customers to negotiate excellent rates for the school, and SunEdison built the solar system and will provide 24/7 reporting, operation and maintenance services for it.
The school anticipates 85 percent of its annual electricity usage will be offset by this system, which amounts to energy cost savings of over $50,000 in the first year alone and $1 million over 20 years.
“By partnering with SunEdison and PowerOptions, Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School is building on a strong tradition of fostering innovation and embracing new technology both inside and outside the classroom,” said Kennedy. “Not only will this solar array deliver clean energy to the school, it will provide savings that can be invested in the education of their students. I applaud TCRTHS, PowerOptions and SunEdison for their creative partnership and shared commitment to a green future.”
“Much of Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School’s programming develops out of creative and cooperative partnerships between area businesses and our staff, which is why we have been thrilled to leverage this public-private partnership approach to implementing solar energy,” said Stephen Dockray, Tri-County Superintendent-Director. “This innovative program that PowerOptions and SunEdison offer has placed clean energy within our reach, allowing us to not only decrease our environmental footprint but also to save energy dollars that we can now reallocate, as we continue to ensure an excellent comprehensive technical and academic education to our students.”
Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School’s solar array came about through participation in PowerOptions’ Solar Program, unveiled in 2012, which helps nonprofits, government institutions, and municipalities enjoy the clean, cost-effective, and sustainable energy benefits of solar power. Such joint projects between PowerOptions, Sun Edison and Massachusetts public entities have already garnered national attention for the innovative approach to renewable energy.
“At PowerOptions, we aim to support the public entities and nonprofits that are serving our communities in part by making solar energy more accessible with offerings like our Solar Program,” said PowerOptions President and CEO Cynthia Arcate. “In addition to cost predictability and savings, Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School implemented their solar project without the need for any upfront costs or ongoing maintenance responsibilities.”
“SunEdison’s collaboration with PowerOptions has helped dozens of nonprofit and public institutions in the New England area go solar and generate significant energy savings for decades to come,” said Steve Raeder, SunEdison’s regional general manager of its Eastern U.S. solar business. “And with our proven record in installing solar systems with hundreds of public entities SunEdison makes going solar easy and hassle-free.”
About Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School
Established in 1977, Tri-County’s mission is to provide an excellent comprehensive technical and academic education to regional high school students. State-of-the-art technical skills and knowledge are enriched and complemented by a solid foundation of academic skills. Creative and cooperative partnerships between area employers and a dynamic staff at Tri-County guarantee the continued growth and development of exciting programs designed to prepare graduates for careers in the twenty-first century. This is a place where students succeed and are well-prepared for work or college. Enrollment at Tri-County is just over 1,000 students. For more information, visit www.tri-county.us.
PowerOptions® is the largest energy buying consortium in Massachusetts, serving more than 500 nonprofit organizations and governmental entities with combined annual energy sales of roughly $200 million. With supply offerings for electricity, natural gas, and solar power, PowerOptions provides its members budget certainty and savings, as well as best-in-industry consumer protections. Joining is easy—any nonprofit or public institution in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island may become a member and participate in this collective purchasing effort. For more information, visit www.poweroptions.org.
SunEdison is the world’s largest renewable energy development company and is transforming the way energy is generated, distributed, and owned around the globe. The company develops, finances, installs, owns, and operates renewable power plants, delivering predictably priced electricity to its residential, commercial, government, and utility customers. SunEdison is one of the world’s largest renewable energy asset managers and provides customers with asset management, operations and maintenance, monitoring and reporting services. Corporate headquarters are in the United States with additional offices and technology manufacturing around the world. SunEdison’s common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “SUNE.” For more information, visit www.sunedison.com.