NSCC Research
NSCC Research Scientist Alain Joseph, left, takes Energy Minister Michel Samson on a tour of the solar panels on the roof of the Waterfront Campus in Dartmouth after an energy announcement Nov. 9 in Darmouth ©Jeff Harper - Metro Halifax

Energy Minister Michel Samson launched the Solar Electricity for Community Buildings Program, a commitment of the 2015 Electricity Plan.

“Our province is a leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and Nova Scotians have said they want to see even more renewable energy as part of our shift towards a cleaner energy future,” said Mr. Samson. “This new program will provide a way for communities to lower emissions by adopting a renewable source of energy.”

The program is open to registered non-profit or charitable organizations, municipalities or organizations owned by municipalities, universities or community colleges and Mi’kmaw bands in Nova Scotia.

“This program may be the entry point for many who are trying to set up solar for the first time,” said Warden Russell Boucher, Municipality of the County of Antigonish. “I am looking forward to seeing the advancements in renewable energy that this program makes across the province.”

Applications will propose a price per kilowatt hour (kWh) for the electricity they generate. Successful organizations will enter into a 20-year agreement with their electric utility.

All applications will be overseen by an independent procurement administrator, and the impact to ratepayers will be capped at 0.1 per cent, which is already built into the rate stability plan.

“We’re excited about this new opportunity for community groups and First Nations to generate solar electricity at their buildings,” said Gord Wilkie, chair of Solar Nova Scotia. “This is a great way for communities to be involved and learn first-hand about the benefits of solar energy.”

The program was developed following consultations with the industry and stakeholders in 2016. Applications will open May 31.

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