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Council Approves Development of Community Solar Pilot

(November 2, 2010) - Halifax Regional Council gave approval this evening for staff to move forward with a ground-breaking pilot project that will help residents equip their homes with solar hot-water heating.

Mayor Peter Kelly called the proposed project a natural fit with the municipality’s own ongoing corporate efforts to reduce energy consumption and reduce its carbon footprint.

“This solar initiative will be unique to HRM,” said Mayor Peter Kelly.  “When it is implemented, it has the potential to benefit residents directly while increasing our overall sustainability.”

Mayor Kelly noted that the initiative will also help support the expansion of the local green economy, thanks to the jobs it represents.

Council gave approval Tuesday for HRM staff to proceed with community consultation to gauge public interest in the program, explore financial feasibility and to formally ask the Province of Nova Scotia to amend the HRM Charter to allow participants to be billed as part of their annual tax bill.

An initiative of HRM’s Sustainable Environment Management Office (SEMO) the Community Solar Pilot Project  is designed to help residents take advantage of the municipality’s significant solar energy potential without having to become an expert in the technology or navigate the technical and financing options.

Through the pilot program, between 500 and 700 HRM homeowners would be eligible to sign-up on a first come, first serve basis, to have two solar hot water panels installed on their property. They would repay the cost for panels and installation as a supplement to their tax bill. The estimated annual cost would be approximately $400 for a period of five to 10 years. This cost is expected to be less than their annual energy savings. 

Community information sessions will take place later this month. Residents will have an opportunity to learn more about the program and speak directly with HRM staff. If there is sufficient interest, formal applications will be accepted from residents beginning in early December with an updated project plan to be submitted for final Regional Council approval early in the New Year. 

More information can be found online at www.Halifax.ca/solarcity .

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Contact:

Mayor Peter Kelly

490-4010

 

Councillor Sue Uteck

Chair, Energy and Underground Services Committee

221-7651

 

Richard MacLellan

SEMO

490-6056

 

Julian Boyle

Infrastructure and Asset Management

476-8075

 

 

 

 

Above content last modified Thursday, January 28, 2021 at 8:49am.