LIPA and Lindenhurst Schools Unveil the Largest School Solar Project in Suffolk County
(Uniondale, N.Y.) - The Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) in its continuing effort to help Long Island become more energy efficient announced today that the Lindenhurst School District has partnered with the Authority to upgrade its facilities by participating in LIPA’s Solar Entrepreneur and Efficiency Long Island/Commercial Construction Program.
The seven photovoltaic (PV) systems total 70.56 kilowatts (kW) and will produce a total of approximately 83,643 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity annually, which will save the Lindenhurst School District and its taxpayers about $16,394 in electricity costs per year.
The solar power systems will also help reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. By using solar power as opposed to fossil fuels to generate electricity, the avoided emissions over a 20-year period will be approximately 2.892 tons of Sulfur Dioxide, 1.292 tons of Nitrous Oxide, and 983.45 tons of Carbon Dioxide.
By participating in LIPA’s Solar Entrepreneur Program, the Lindenhurst School District also received a $315,000 rebate, which will help offset some of the capital costs for the seven PV systems.
“Lindenhurst School District can now harness the energy of the sun to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, lower its energy bills and protect the environment” said LIPA President and CEO Kevin S. Law. “LIPA commends the Lindenhurst School district for making renewable energy part of their energy portfolio. Moreover, every dollar saved by the district is a dollar of property taxes that doesn’t have to be raised.”
“Our partnership with LIPA will help reduce our energy costs and offset the school budget leaving more funding for student programs,” said Lindenhurst School District Superintendent Neil Lederer. “I would like to thank the LIPA staff for its assistance during this project and our District looks forward to working with them on future energy efficient upgrades.”
Through June 1, 2009, under its Solar Pioneer and Entrepreneur programs, LIPA has rebated over $47.7 million for the installation of approximately 1940 PV systems Island-wide.
That number breaks down to 1827 residential and 65 commercial systems and 48 systems installed at educational, not-for-profit and Government facilities. Additionally, there are 450 rebate applications pending for PV systems that are about to be installed.
LIPA’s Solar Pioneer and Entrepreneur rebates are currently available for residential and commercial customers at $3.50 per watt up to a 10 kW system.
School districts, not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) organizations and government entities within LIPA’s service area are eligible for an extra dollar per watt above the current LIPA Solar Pioneer rebate of $3.50 for a total of $4.50 per watt up to a 10 kW system as they are not eligible for federal and state tax credits.
In addition to the recent PV installation, in 2006, the school district participated in LIPA’s Efficiency Long Island/Commercial Construction Program. Lindenhurst School District upgraded the lighting systems in many of their buildings to high-efficiency fixtures with modern controls. In total, this work qualified the School District for over $120,000 in rebates from the Authority. These efficiency measures allowed the District to save over 149 kW in demand and over 430,000 kWh, resulting in a savings of approximately $80,000 annually.
Efficiency Long Island is a 10-year, $924 million energy efficiency program launched this year which offers a wide array of incentives, rebates and initiatives to LIPA’s residential and commercial customers to assist them in reducing their energy usage and thereby lowering their bills.
“Last year I did a survey of 17 Long Island school districts. The bad news: only one school was using any form of alternative energy. The good news: We passed a bill in the House to green our schools that will make an additional $6.4 billion dollars available in 2010 for energy-efficient upgrades,” said Rep. Steve Israel. “By going green our schools can cut their energy costs and that savings can help keep our property taxes in check. What Kevin Law of LIPA and Lindenhurst Public Schools are doing with alternative energy is an excellent example for school districts across New York.”
“As a long-time supporter of solar photovoltaics, I am thrilled to know that LIPA has partnered with the Lindenhurst School District and installed seven photovoltaic panels at the Harding Avenue Elementary School. District taxpayers will save over $16,000 in electricity costs this year and less fossil fuels will be burned, thus helping to clean Long Island’s air,” said State Senator Owen Johnson. “This important project will serve as an example for students, teachers and residents alike that photovoltaics are cost effective and currently available for installation. I applaud LIPA President and CEO Law and Superintendent Lederer on their successful collaboration and I urge all of my school districts in the 4th Senate District to avail themselves of LIPA’s incentive programs.”
“Solar power helps ensure a more sustainable future,” said State Assemblyman Robert K. Sweeney (11th Assembly District). “Solar energy is a completely renewable resource. Unlike fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas, solar power does not pollute the environment or contribute to global warming. Producing clean electricity from the sun will help eliminate greenhouse gas emissions, reduce our national dependence on foreign oil, and decrease the amount of local air pollution.”
“Today Lindenhurst School District and LIPA have taken a step in the bright direction,” said Suffolk County Legislator Wayne R. Horsley. “By installing seven PV systems Lindenhurst School District will save $16,394 in utility costs and at the same time LIPA’s photovoltaic clean energy source will reduce local green house gas emissions.
This is indeed a shining moment for taxpayers and our step towards a greener, brighter future for our children.” Horsley concluded, “I am glad to support this initiative, and I applaud Superintendent Neil Lederer and LIPA President and CEO Kevin Law for their progressive leadership.”
“I applaud the collaboration between LIPA and the Lindenhurst School District to install seven solar powered systems within the district,” said Babylon Town Supervisor Steve Bellone. “LIPA’s rebates have enabled residents, businesses and not-for profits the ability to install solar systems in a cost effective manner which in turn will save money and protect the environment.”
“The energy efficiency improvements and solar energy systems will save the Lindenhurst schools precious taxpayer dollars that can now be put to better use,” said Gordian Raacke, Executive Director of the not-for-profit organization Renewable Energy Long lsland. “Using clean energy sources in schools will also teach the next generation a vital lesson for the 21st century, which is that we have the technologies today to generate electricity without pollution and climate-changing greenhouse gases. I applaud LIPA President Kevin Law and Lindenhurst Superintendent Lederer for demonstrating true leadership that will inspire other Long Island schools to go solar.”
“Installing large scale solar at schools will not only advance a progressive energy agenda for Long Island, reduce our carbon footprint and stabilize our school energy costs but also allows for the next generation to better understand and support this type of critical renewable energy infrastructure,” said Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director for Citizens Campaign for the Environment.
“Investing in solar energy and energy efficiency improvements is good in that it reduces greenhouse gases that cause global warming and because it saves money on energy costs in the long run,” said Neal Lewis, Executive Director of the Sustainability Institute at Molloy College. “It is particularly encouraging to see school districts like the Lindenhurst investing in clean energy because it educates children about the importance of clean energy solutions to our future energy needs.”
“The greening of our schools is a win-win,” said Sarah Lansdale, Executive Director of Sustainable Long Island. “Green schools create a healthier learning environment and a healthier planet, help preserve natural resources, teach kids to think and live in sustainable ways, and will ultimately save school districts and tax payers hundreds of thousands of dollars. Sustainable Long Island applauds the Long Island Power Authority, the Lindenhurst School District, Congressman Israel and Supervisor Bellone for their leadership on this issue.”
“Kudos to LIPA for fostering yet another key clean energy partnership that will ease the burden on school budgets, help to stimulate the local economy and reduce the environmental impacts associated with the island’s older electric generation. Long Islanders want clean energy and LIPA is helping to lead the way,” said Kyle Rabin, Director, Network for New Energy Choices.
For more information about LIPA’s Solar Pioneer and Entrepreneur Programs and Efficiency Long Island go to http://www.lipower.org/efficiency.
LIPA, a non-profit municipal electric provider, owns the retail electric Transmission and Distribution System on Long Island and provides electric service to more than 1.1 million customers in Nassau and Suffolk counties and the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens. LIPA is the 2nd largest municipal electric utility in the nation in terms of electric revenues, 3rd largest in terms of customers served and the 7th largest in terms of electricity delivered. In 2006, LIPA outperformed all other overhead electric utilities in New York State in all three major reliability categories. LIPA does not provide natural gas service or own any on-island generating assets. More information about LIPA can be found online at: http://www.lipower.org