ALBANY, N.Y. — The Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany (RCDA) chosen Nexamp to provide community solar that will lower its electric bills and enable it to support clean energy without having to make any investments or install any equipment on its property.
Nexamp’s community solar farm in Brunswick is a 5.5 MW facility featuring 16,000 solar panels capable of generating enough power for more than 500 average homes. The diocese is beginning with an allocation from the farm that covers the power used by its Pastoral Center in Albany and expects to subscribe to additional capacity for other buildings in the future.
The RCDA analyzed the options for going solar—either installing expensive equipment on its facility or subscribing to a local community solar farm — and decided that community solar was the right approach. With no upfront costs, nothing to install and no long-term contracts, the diocese will save 10% on its monthly electricity costs and will be supporting the generation of clean, renewable energy for the local power grid.
“Good stewardship of our resources, both financial and natural, is a responsibility we take very seriously,” Paul Ehmann, director, Office of Real Property, RCDA, said.
“Climate change is a real threat in the world today, and the Pope has called us specifically to do our part in implementing solutions that are sustainable on both an environmental and social level. So for us, the opportunity to easily save money and reduce our carbon footprint through community solar made this decision an obvious one,” Ehmann added.
Community solar allows anyone — from homeowners or renters to small businesses or non-profits — in the local utility’s service area to subscribe to a share of the farm and receive energy credits that reduce their monthly electric bill. Because there is no fee to enroll and no long-term contract, subscribers are able to take advantage of the program with no risk.
“We believe that clean energy should be accessible to everyone, regardless of location, finances or any other variable,” Nexamp CEO Zaid Ashai noted.
“For an organization such as the RCDA, community solar aligns well with its commitment to the environment and a desire to make its dollars stretch further. We look forward to working with Paul and his team to expand the program to other facilities in the RCDA portfolio, as well as educating parishioners about the opportunities for their residences,” Ashai added.
Nexamp has more than a dozen community solar farms in operation or under construction across New York State and many more throughout the Northeast. The company, founded by two U.S. Army veterans, has been providing comprehensive solar and storage solutions to consumers, businesses and municipalities for more than a decade.
With New York committed to generating half of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030, community solar will play an important role for the state.