Installing a renewable energy system for your business or organization will reduce it's greenhouse gas emissions and the amount of electricity purchased from a utility. This is a win-win situation: The business or organization will be seen as a steward in the community, and the system will help to decrease monthly expenses.
Before considering a renewable energy project, consider these questions to see if your building is a good candidate for an on-site renewable energy generation system:
- Is the building energy-efficient?
- Which technologies are available and appropriate for your location and needs?
- How much electricity do you want to produce?
- How much money can you invest in the system?
- Would the company consider an agreement to locate the system elsewhere if local siting is an issue?
- Who might you partner with to leverage clean energy buying power?
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It is said that the best kilowatt-hour is the one not used. Assessing your business's energy efficiency before investing in renewable energy is smart and will save money in the long run. DEP's Energy Efficiency for Businesses Web page offers tips and resources to improve your facility's energy efficiency.
The links below offer additional information about renewable energy technologies:
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Should we include information for rewards earned by businesses that install clean energy technologies? We could mirror the section available on the "Renewable Energy Technologies at Home" page. It could look like this:
Clean Energy Rewards for Your Technologies
Businesses and organizations that install clean energy technologies are eligible to receive monetary rewards as part of the Montgomery County Clean Energy Rewards program. To receive such rewards, you must submit an application along with proper documentation of your system for DEP to review.
DEP will work with each on-site generator to determine how much energy the on-site system generates. The reward will then be based on that system's data. System specifications are entered into the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) PV Watts calculator to estimate the annual electricity generation. Then DEP calculates the reward (energy generated x $0.005) to get the total reward value. Most system owners receive a check for about $20 per year.
Download application materials:
All applications for residents and businesses that have installed a solar PV system must be received by July 6, 2009. One-time annual rewards will be calculated for electricity generated July 1, 2009, to June 30, 2009, or from the date of installation to June 30, 2009.
The dates above seem wrong. Also, are solar PV systems the only ones eligible for rewards?
For a complete review of the program's procedures, read the fact sheet Certification for On-site Generation Systems (PDF, 6pp, 159K)
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Buying Clean Energy
Businesses and organizations can also choose to purchase clean energy for their buildings and operations. Montgomery County's Clean Energy Rewards program provides rewards to businesses and organizations that purchase clean energy from a program-certified provider. Entities receive half a cent per kilowatt-hour for purchasing at least 50 percent clean energy. The reward helps to offset the higher cost of clean energy.
Aggregate Clean Energy Purchases
Some small businesses and organizations might want to purchase clean energy but don't have the resources to do so. In such cases, joining together with other small businesses could be a way to leverage the groups' resources and improve buying power. Some energy suppliers and renewable energy certificate (REC) marketers might help to organize small businesses within a specified area so they can purchase clean energy together. The larger-volume purchase helps to lower the price of electricity for all users. For instance, Montgomery County purchases 10 percent of its electricity from clean, renewable resources and it manages the purchase with other jurisdictions, such as Gaithersburg and Rockville, and organizations, such as Montgomery County Public Schools, to increase its buying power.
For other examples of aggregate purchases, read an article about how local businesses are working with Clean Currents to find affordable ways to purchase green energy.
Are there any additional resources or incentives for businesses?
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