Officials from the NY Power Authority, NY State Energy Research and Development Authority, energy system developer Solar Liberty, and investor Inclusive Prosperity Capital visited EH on April 20 for a ribbon-cutting and celebration of a new green energy achievement, noting East Hampton Town's leadership and innovation on energy and sustainability initiatives.
The 165-panel rooftop solar energy system is tied directly into the Parks Department building and will provide about 90 megawatt hours of energy annually. In the first year, it will offset nearly 110,000 pounds of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to the carbon dioxide emissions from more than 125,000 miles driven by an average passenger vehicle.
The 75-kilowatt solar PV (photovoltaic) system will generate clean, renewable power and charge a 137- kilowatt hour battery. It is expected that 100% of the energy costs of the building will be offset with credits from the energy produced by the solar PV system. Any additional energy credits will be allocated to another building on the Town Hall campus.
The Town, in collaboration with the Power Authority, selected New York-based Solar Liberty and its financing partner on the project, Inclusive Prosperity Capital, through a competitive process to develop the solar-plus-battery storage system. The solar PV system will be financed through a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Inclusive Prosperity Capital, with no upfront costs to the town. A PPA also enables the Town to benefit from cost offsets provided by tax credits.
The battery, which was added at no cost to the Town through grant support from NYPA, will capture energy and discharge it to the grid when needed, usually during the periods of highest demand.
NYPA recommended the system’s installation as part of East Hampton’s ongoing efforts to move toward a 100 percent renewable energy goal. NYPA DER Advisory Services assisted as advisor throughout implementation. The project also supports the NYS Governor Hochul's aggressive solar and energy storage targets to fight climate change, which includes achieving at least 10 gigawatts of distributed solar by 2030.
In support of the Town's goals of using 100-percent renewable energy, Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc has advanced energy sustainability efforts, including the Energize East Hampton campaign offering incentives to residents for solar installations and other energy-saving devices, and has continued assessments of and reductions in energy usage at public buildings. Other environmental initiatives include electric vehicle charging stations on the Town Hall campus, town-wide LED streetlighting upgrades, and the development on Town land of the first megawatt-scale solar farm on Long Island’s South Fork..