LISBON — Lisbon has signed an agreement with a solar energy company that will save the town upward of $15,000 per year through renewable energy tax credits.

Nexamp Community Solar brokers renewable energy credits and will give Lisbon a 15% guaranteed energy savings. Those savings will start in the summer of 2021, said Brett Richardson, Lisbon’s economic and community development director.

Richardson told the town council Tuesday that the program is low risk. There is no upfront cost to the town, he said. The program is also open to Lisbon businesses and residents.

The town can cancel the service at any time if it finds a better deal, but could continue to save 15% through this deal for up to 20 years.

“More of these opportunities will come online and it might be worthwhile to consider setting aside savings to invest in energy efficiency moving forward,” Richardson said, “whether that is weatherization to reduce costs or to have the capital if the town desires, to make investments to leverage to get better savings in the future.”

Richardson told The Times Record Wednesday that the more the town or an individual consumer can invest in energy savings, the more of an economic return it will yield. That could include a solar array but also insulation and other weatherization methods to improve building efficiency.

“The sooner we get in the game the sooner we start to accrue savings and we still have that option to do something different down the road,” he said.

The Portland Press Herald reported in September that Nexamp Inc. purchased 10 solar projects from Dimension Renewable Energy of Atlanta which are still under development in Maine. Each project has a rough generating capacity of 5 megawatts and among their locations are Milo, Limerick, Lisbon, Livermore, West Paris and Madison.

According to the Portland Press Herald, Nexamp is selling portions of the power from the projects to Central Maine Power and Versant Power customers through a subscription program. Customers can receive a 15 percent credit on their monthly electric bills.

Lisbon councilors also agreed Tuesday to hire Titan Energy New England, Inc. to find other renewable energy options for the town. It won’t cost the town anything for TitanEnergy to seek requests for proposals for the town. Nor is the town committed to accept any of the proposals.

Titan Energy believes it can find a 20 to 25% cost savings for the town according to Richardson.

“I think of the idea here is speed and that some of this capacity is being gobbled up,” Richardson said.

 

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