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Lebanon schools going solar

By EKATERINE TCHELIDZE

Chronicle Staff Writer

LEBANON — The town and school system have stepped on the green path, with Lebanon’s elementary and middle schools soon becoming sources of “green” energy.

The project to install dozens of solar panels on the roofs of both Lebanon Elementary School and Lebanon Middle School is almost complete, Lebanon Superintendent of School Robert Angeli said.

Installation began in July and will be wrapped up by October or the beginning of November, he said.

“We are ready to go online in October or by Nov. 1,” Angeli said.

The project, which took two years of planning, is long term, Angeli said.

He said “any business or home that gets solar panels is ready for a long-term commitment.”

It was funded through the Connecticut Green Bank, which works to achieve clean and less expensive energy while supporting local economic development.

The Connecticut Green Bank is a clean energy financial and investment institution that works with private sectors to implement clean energy technologies.

Angeli said the green bank looks for investors that would fund the installation of solar panels on school roofs and other public entities.

In return, investors get a tax break over the course of the project for funding it.

So far, the green bank and its private investors contributed more than $1 billion in capital for clean energy projects throughout the state, according to the Connecticut Green Bank website.

Thanks to this system, Lebanon only had to pay minimal fees to cut down two trees that were casting shadows on the school roofs and blocking the sun.

All other fees, including roof inspection and solar panels installation, were paid by the company.

Over the course of 20 years, use of the solar panels at the elementary and middle schools is expected to save the town $500,000 on energy fees, Angeli said.

“We thought it was worthwhile because of that,” he said.

The power received from solar panels will be supplemental to the existing power at the school, Angeli said.

 

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