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PRESS RELEASE - Clean Energy Choice Grants Awarded to Williamstown and Williamsburg
December 30, 2009

BOSTON – Today, State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D – Pittsfield) announces Clean Energy Choice Grants awarded to the Towns of Williamstown and Williamsburg by the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust. The grants, totaling $70,076, help fund solar projects which further the Commonwealth’s clean energy goals.
 
“Recently state policymakers set dramatic renewable energy goals for the Commonwealth,” said Downing. “I am pleased these two communities chose to participate in programs such as this to generate clean energy on-site, save money and help preserve Massachusetts’ environmental assets.”
 
The Trust is providing the Town of Williamstown with a Clean Energy Choice grant of $49,011.49 to help fund the installation of a 16.38 kW photovoltaic array and Data Acquisition System on the Williamstown Department of Public Works salt storage facility. This system will reduce the Town’s energy costs and will help educate residents about the power of clean energy technologies. 
 
Further, the Trust is awarding the Town of Williamsburg with a Clean Energy Choice grant of $21,775.13 for the installation of a 2.97 kW roof-mounted PV system at the Anne T. Dunphy School. This system will reduce the Town’s energy costs and will help educate residents about the power of clean energy technologies. The installation will also include a Data Acquisition System that will allow viewing of real-time data on any computer on the school’s local area network.
 
Program funding comes as a result of efforts by Massachusetts citizens to purchase clean energy through their electric utility bills, which generated matching funds from the Trust for use toward clean energy projects.
 
Dozens of other communities are also using this matching funding for projects such as solar electric arrays, solar trash compactors, renewable energy educational materials, and other renewable energy projects and related materials. In November, Downing and State Representative Wm. Smitty Pignatelli (D – Lenox) announced a Clean Energy Choice grant for the Town of Egremont. The $20,057 award went towards the installation of a 2 kilowatt pole-mounted photovoltaic system at Egremont’s Highway Garage.

“These communities are green leaders; it’s wonderful that they are implementing clean energy projects that their residents, businesses, and public officials can see in practice,” said Trust Executive Director Carter Wall. “The Trust is proud to support these communities, and we hope that these projects will help generate ideas for other renewable energy endeavors.”
 
This is the last round of Clean Energy Choice Awards as administered by the Trust. As a result of the implementation of the 2008 Green Communities Act, the Green Communities Division at the Department of Energy Resources is now the centerpiece of the state’s investment in green energy in communities.  Therefore, the Trust discontinued the Clean Energy Choice match program as of June 30, 2009.  
 
“We commend these communities, and encourage all Massachusetts towns and cities to look into becoming Green Communities under the Green Communities Act of 2008,” said Phil Giudice, DOER Commissioner. “With assistance from the state, communities can learn about and implement energy solutions, including energy efficiency measures and renewable energy projects.”
 
Learn more about clean energy assistance available for Massachusetts towns and cities by visiting DOER’s Green Communities website: www.mass.gov/doer.
 
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