The Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (CEFIA) has announced the approval of two C-PACE financed solar projects in the City of Hartford. The projects, supported with Zero-Emission Renewable Energy Credits (ZRECs) and financed through C-PACE are part of Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s commitment to cheaper, cleaner and more reliable energy. Today’s announcement follows the announcement last week that Hartford is one of eight municipalities selected for the Statewide Microgrid Pilot Program.
"Connecticut has long been a national leader in energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. It is now the law in Connecticut that underserved communities, including Hartford residents and small businesses, must receive their share of these program resources. I welcome the announcement today that Crest Mechanical Services, a Hartford based business with just under 100 employees, will receive assistance through the C-PACE program for installation of two solar arrays. This will help them to be more competitive by lowering their energy costs," said Senator John Fonfara (D-Hartford).
CEFIA will provide C-PACE financing in the amount of $325,000 to support the installation of a 100 kW solar PV system at 1841 Broad Street. This facility is a 40,000 square foot building currently being used as an office space and warehouse primarily for Crest Mechanical Services, a third generation family-owned business started in 1964. The owners are expected to realize approximately $47,000 in annual savings—which includes $22,000 from Connecticut’s small ZREC program—with system lifetime savings of approximately $920,000.
"The C-PACE program allowed me to access low-cost and long-term financing to further support our desire to deploy solar energy and stabilize our energy costs over the long-term", indicated Paul Breglio, President Crest Mechanical. "Additionally, the C-PACE program streamlined the funding process and was extremely customer friendly. The C-PACE program will allow me to re-evaluate all my energy systems in all of my Connecticut properties".
The second location, also primarily used by Crest Mechanical Services, is a 34,500 square foot building at 41 Walnut Street. The facility, originally constructed in 1925, is accessing C-PACE financing in the amount of $170,000 to support the installation of a 55 kW solar PV system. The owner is expected to realize $21,000 in annual savings, including $10,660 from Connecticut’s small ZREC program. Lifetime savings are anticipated to be approximately $418,000.
Both projects received C-PACE financing for 20 years at 5.5% interest. Collectively, these projects will save approximately $68,000 annually in avoided energy costs thus making the property more sustainable and tenant businesses more competitive. The Solar PV systems are being installed by Green Earth Energy Photovoltaic, a full service design-build solar and renewable energy integrator headquartered in Longmeadow, Massachusetts.
“The C-PACE program offered by CEFIA and the ZREC program offered through CL&P provide a terrific platform for the deployment and growth of Solar energy in the State of Connecticut,” said Chris Scyocurka, Managing Partner, Green Earth Energy Photovoltaic. Green Earth Energy is pleased to be a part of these efforts."
C-PACE financing is available throughout Hartford, one of the early adopters of the program in the state. Since joining the program, Hartford has received over $1 million in C-PACE clean energy investment.
“Once again I welcome our partnership with CEFIA and the State of Connecticut in availing programs and financing products that allow citizens, businesses, and municipalities the ability to engage in smart energy solutions,” said Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra. “These two projects come on the heels of the announcement that The Bushnell Memorial has also received C-PACE financing to address their energy issues. My congratulations to all!”
About the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority
CEFIA was established by Connecticut’s General Assembly on July 1, 2011 as a part of Public Act 11-80. This new quasi-public agency supersedes the former Connecticut Clean Energy Fund. CEFIA’s mission is to promote, develop and invest in clean energy and energy efficiency projects in order to strengthen Connecticut’s economy, protect community health, improve the environment, and promote a secure energy supply for the state. As the nation’s first full-scale clean energy finance authority, CEFIA will leverage public and private funds to drive investment and scale-up clean energy deployment in Connecticut. For more information about CEFIA, please visit www.ctcleanenergy.com.
Connecticut’s Commercial & Industrial PACE (C-PACE) program, which is administered by CEFIA, allows interested property owners to access financing to undertake qualifying energy efficiency and clean energy improvements on their buildings and, using the savings generated from the energy improvements, repay the investment through an additional charge (“assessment”) on their property tax bill. Similar to a sewer tax assessment, capital provided under a PACE program is secured by a lien on the owner’s property tax bill and paid back over time. Like other benefit assessments, the PACE lien is a non-accelerating, senior lien secured by the property. The repayment obligation transfers automatically to the next owner if the property is sold. Because the payment is tied to the property tax, low interest capital can be raised from the private sector with no government financing required. This arrangement spreads the cost of clean energy improvements – such as energy efficient boilers, upgraded insulation, new windows, or solar installations – over the expected life of the measure.
Since launching in late January, C-PACE has approved 13 projects totaling $12M and closed 5 transactions totaling $1.14M.