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Energy Park to set city as leader in community

GUELPH

A new city-based renewable energy co-operative is offering residents the opportunity to finance a solar energy park.

It is a contribution to the city’s community energy initiative, and it has gained the support of the Chamber of Commerce and Mayor Karen Farbridge.

In her letter of support for the development, Farbridge said, ”I believe that Guelph is ideally suited to embrace such a community power project and make it a success ... [It] has the potential to make a significant impact on the community energy landscape in Ontario.”

The solar park, a 7.5 megawatt ground-mounted installation on Gordon Street, will be located on urban reserve lands owned by the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers, a division of the Foundation for the Support of International Medical Training. Hall’s Pond Solar Co-operative will develop and own the system on the property leased from IAMAT, making it the largest urban community financed project in the province.

Hall’s Pond is submitting a Feed in Tariff (FIT) application to the Ontario Power Authority. The submission was to be officially announced by the mayor on May 24 at 10am.

Hall’s Pond is seeking members to help build the solar park using a community power model. The goal is to raise the financing from the citizens of Guelph and surrounding area. The initial financial commitment is for five years with a term up to 20 years to match the length of the Feed in Tariff contract. The co-op will pay an initial return of 5%, which will be stepped up by 20% every fifth year.

Surpluses from renewable energy developments will be administered by the Community Wealth Non-Profit, a fund dedicated to the establishment of community financed green energy and social enterprise.

The community power development fulfills the intent of the Green Energy and Economy Act by allowing citizens to become involved in the production of renewable energy and receive a fair financial benefit for doing so.

 

 

Vol 44 Issue 21

May 27, 2011

ReliableFord

Wellington County

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