Montague Notebook: July 27, 2021

  • Solar panels on the roof of Turners Falls High School and Great Falls Middle School. The Energy Committee is exploring the feasibility of installing more solar panels in response to a petition created by Gary Smith Staff Photo/Julian Mendoza

Published: 8/3/2021 6:38:21 PM
Energy Committee talks solar bylaws

MONTAGUE — The Energy Committee discussed solar bylaws and the minimal potential for expansion of solar during its meeting last week.

Committee members cited an aversion to further deforestation and the state’s lack of investment in carport solar canopies as the primary reasons making solar expansion unlikely in Montague.

“In a sense, there’s limited space for solar in the future,” Town Planner Walter Ramsey said. “Certainly not on the scale of other developments that are in this town.”

“I think it’s pretty universally known that the state’s solar program does not incentivize what it needs to incentivize,” Energy Committee member Tim Van Egmond said. “There’s just not enough incentive to get carports installed.”

Committee explores potential for solar panels at middle/high school

MONTAGUE — The Energy Committee is exploring the feasibility of installing more solar panels at Great Falls Middle School and Turners Falls High School.

This discussion comes in response to a Change.org petition created by Gary Smith that advocates for the number of solar panels on the school building to be tripled. As of Monday, the petition had received 145 signatures.

According to the petition, Great Falls Middle School and Turners Falls High School currently have 1,950 square feet of solar panels that were installed in April 2004. The idea is to triple the amount to 5,850 square feet of panels.

“This project would increase our solar capacity from powering 12 classrooms to powering 36 classrooms,” the petition reads.

The Energy Committee decided during its meeting last week to not sign or show support for the petition until its members conduct research as to how realistic of a goal adding more solar panels may be financially and structurally.




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