Local Energy Solutions E-News
Turning Ideas into Action
April 2016

Hearing Related to RGGI Tomorrow
The NH House will hear a bill in Concord this Tuesday April 5th,  SB 492, at 10:00am in the Legislative Office Building in Concord (Room 304), that would increase available RGGI funding for energy efficiency projects in towns, homes, and low income sectors. 
Currently NH uses only a fraction of our RGGI auction proceeds to fund energy efficiency programming. This bill would increase the funding for town projects like LED street lighting and upgraded mechanical and heating systems, as well as weatherizing homes for all residential electric customers, including qualified low income populations.  You can attend the public hearing or you can contact your Representative to weigh in on this piece of energy legislation (SB 492).  If you have questions about the bill or the public hearing, you can contact Kate Epsen at NHSEA at  kate@nhsea.org .

US Green Building Council Summit -
Discounted Rate for 
NH Local Energy Leaders!


8th
Annual Upper Northeast Regional Summit
Mt. Washington Hotel
Saturday, April 30, 2016

The NH Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council is hosting the 8 th Annual Upper Northeast Regional Summit April 29 through May 1, 2016.  The Upper Northeast Region is comprised of Chapters from all New England states and Upstate New York.  The majority of events will take place on Saturday, April 30 th .  

Discount for NH's Local Energy Leaders:
If you are a member of a local energy group or if you are working with your local municipality or school on clean energy and energy efficiency solutions, you may register for the Saturday event at a discounted rate of $40 for the whole day (breakfast and lunch included)!

To register at the discounted rate:
1.  Register at  www.usgbcnh.org
2.  Request to be invoiced later
3.  You will be emailed an invoice which can be paid online or at the door at the summit

LES Work Group Member Spotlight:
Meet our Vice Chair!
Jill Lonvgal
Environmental Planner, Nashua Regional Planning Commission &
LES Work Group Vice Chair

What is your background in local energy work?
I'm fortunate to have worked on a variety of energy projects in the Nashua Region.  On the planning side, I've helped communities to benchmark their energy use, develop energy action plans, and write energy chapters in their municipal master plans.  I also organized municipalities and school districts to form the Nashua Region Electricity Supply Aggregation.  The goal of the aggregation is to purchase electricity as a group from a competitive supplier at a lower rate than each member could receive on its own.  I am currently starting a new project in partnership with the Local Energy Solutions Work Group to develop a renewable energy decision guide for municipalities. 
 
What does the Nashua Regional Planning Commission do to support local energy action? 
NRPC serves as a resource to support and enhance local planning, including energy action.  We provide a forum for communities to share information and we help to coordinate energy initiatives at the regional level. 
 
What makes you passionate about this work?  
Taking action at the local level helps people to realize that they can make a difference.  Solving the problem of climate change can seem so overwhelming that it is easy to think there is nothing any one individual or community can do to help.  But if enough communities take even small steps it can really make a difference. 
 
What do you enjoy doing when you're not busy working with communities in the Nashua Region?  
My biggest enjoyment comes from being a mom to my two daughters, who are 1 and 3 years old.  My husband and I are avid hikers (at least we were before becoming parents), so we are trying to instill a love for the outdoors in our girls at a young age.  We hope to spend plenty of time in the White Mountains as a family this summer.
 
You Can Contact Jill About:
  • Aggregation for purchase of electricity
  • Community energy plan documents
  • Regulatory audits
  • Hazard mitigation planning

Regional Energy Hub Activities
PAREI and Local Foods Plymouth Earth Day Open House 
April 22nd, 2016 from 3:00 - 6:00 p.m.
PAREI Office, 79 Highland Street, Plymouth, NH

What is happening at the Open House?

3:00pm - 4:30pm - We will be installing a PAREI-Made Solar Light Post at the PAREI office and Selling Raffle Tickets to Win a Solar Light Post of your Own.
3:00pm - 6:00pm - Yard Sale - Energy and Office Related Items (Donations accepted from members - Please call the office at 603-536-5030 before stopping by with donations - we have limited space.)
5:00pm - 7:00pm - Local Foods Plymouth weekly order pick up - combine your pick up with attending the Open House.
4:30pm - 6:00pm - Fundraiser Cookout. Come try Hamburgers and Hot Dogs from Local Farmers, Porkside Farm and Peaked Moon Farm. Just $5!

Earth Day "Funergy" Festival 
April 24, 2016
North Conway Community Center

The Mt. Washington Valley Citizens for Energy Efficient Communities (a.k.a. Citizens Energy Team) will participate in an Earth Day event called "Funergy" on April 24, 2016, 10am - 2pm.  The Mt Washington Valley Green Team and 4 Your Kids Recycling are hosting this 6th Funergy Festival on the grounds of the newly constructed North Conway Community Center  focused on sustainable and green practices, and clean energy and recycling. The event is FREE and there will be a full slate of kid-friendly activities and green-living exhibits and demonstrations.

The Citizens Energy Committee will offer a scavenger hunt for youth with prizes, based on a model by Plymouth Area Renewable Energy Initiative (PAREI).  The game is adapted for this event and involves locating sustainable energy efficient implementations in and around the new community center, and matching pictures with a list of energy costs saving items.  Highlighting even the simplest of building energy saving devices gets the word out and stimulates the youth learning process for application to their own surroundings.  Prizes include LED bulbs and a Luci outdoor inflatable solar light.

In addition to live music, exhibits and demonstrations featuring alternative energy, energy conservation, and other environmentally friendly themes there will be local vendors selling their environmentally conscience wares. Demonstrations include a pedal powered shower pump and smoothie maker, along with kilowatt meter reader and incandescent and LED bulb displays.  Frase Electric and ReVision Energy will be among the exhibitors.


Upcoming Events
Dunbarton Energy Fair  
April 23, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Dunbarton Community Center, 20 Robert Rogers Road, Dunbarton, NH
Sponsored by the Dunbarton Energy Committee & Bow Energy Club (Baker Free Library)
Free Workshops include:
  • Solar Technologies 101
  • Simple and DIY Projects - Button Up NH 101
  • Advanced Projects - Button Up NH 201
  • Heat Pump - MiniSplits
NH Coastal Climate Summit
May 13, 2016 from 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
Hugh Gregg Coastal Conservation Center in Greenland, NH

EV Charging Station Ribbon Cutting
May 19, 2016 at 1:30 p.m.
Nissan of Salem, NH
The dealership has just installed an electric vehicle DC fast charger at 343 Main St. in Salem.  A DC fast charger will fully charge an electric vehicle in just 20  minutes!  There will be several speakers and refreshments at the event. The charger is free and available to use 24/7. 

Green Your Fleet! 
June 10, 2016
New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Loudon, NH
Green Your Fleet is a free all-day transportation conference focused on businesses and fleets throughout New England.  Attendees learn about petroleum reduction strategies from area fleet managers, and are updated on the latest in alternative fuel and advanced vehicle technologies.  RSVP today!

Upcoming Trainings
Soak Up The Rain New England Webinar Series
Starting on Tuesday, April 5th, from 12pm-1:30pm.
Upcoming Webinars:
  • Engaging Residential Homeowners/Renters in Low-income Urban Communities: Innovative Approaches to Promoting Community-Based  Stormwater Management
  • Back to School: Soaking Up the Rain at K-12 Schools
  • Latest and Greatest EPA Green Infrastructure Tools
  • Paying for Stormwater Management: Innovative Funding Strategies
  • Driving Demand for Green Infrastructure

Solarize Team Training 
Learn How to Start a Solarize Campaign in Your Town
April 23, 2016 from 1:00 - 2:30 p.m.
Great Room of the Wolfeboro Town Hall, 86 South Main Street, Wolfeboro, NH
This workshop is FREE but please sign up to at:  www.solarizewolfeboro.org

Free Solar 101 Workshops
Lakes Region Community College is producing a series of free Solar 101 workshops around New Hampshire. One series of workshops are for residential property owners, and the other series are for municipal officials.  Both of these vendor-neutral workshops focus on grid-tied, residential solar PV systems.  Produced with support of the U.S. DOE SunShot Initiative, in partnership with NH OEP and CESA. 
 
NH Residential Solar 101:
Sat., April 23, 9:30 - 11:30 am, Wolfeboro Town Hall
Wed., May 18, 6:30 - 8:30 pm, Bass Hall, Peterborough
 
Solar 101 for NH Municipal Officials:
Mon., May 9, 3:00 - 5:00 pm, Nashua Public Library
Tue., May 17, 3:00 - 5:00 pm, Lebanon City Council Chambers
Sat., June 4, NH OEP Planning and Zoning Conference
 
For more information go to: www.lrcc.edu/solar101 or contact Andy Duncan.

NH Energy Code & Beyond  Code Workshop Series (Free)
Residential Workshop Schedule:
Thursday, April 21st from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Cotton Mill, 30 Front Street, Nashua, NH 03064 
Afternoon Topic: ENERGY STAR High Rise program overview & guided tour through the Cotton Mill

Tuesday, May 17th from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
The Common Man, 231 Main Street, Plymouth, NH 03264 
Afternoon Topic: Home Energy Products, Mini-splits - installation best practices

Commercial Workshop Schedule:
Tuesday April 26th from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
The Puritan, 245 Hooksett Road, Manchester, NH 03101
Afternoon Topic: Project Case Study

Thursday May 19th, from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
The Common Man, 231 Main Street, Plymouth, NH 03264
Afternoon Topic: Project Case Study 

For more information go to www.nhenergycode.com or contact Lucy Bass at Lucy.Bass@gdsassociates.com or (603) - 656-0336


Energy Solutions from Around New Hampshire
News from our Communities

Durham Energy Committee
The Durham Energy Committee celebrated the start of construction on its 640 kW DC solar array project that will supply 100% of their non-wastewater municipal meters as well as a portion of the Oyster River School District's usage. They are looking forward to the first meeting of the Seacoast Energy Hub in late April or May and have had a number of productive and energizing contacts with their neighboring energy committees in Lee, Stratham, Dover, Portsmouth, and Rye so far this year. Their priority for the coming month is to implement in collaboration with Ms. Audrey Cline, their code enforcement officer, the NH OEP's recommendations for expedited solar permitting in light of the rising number of residential solar projects in town and in anticipation of a Seacoast Solarize campaign in planning for January of 2017.


Wolfeboro Energy Committee
The Solarize Wolfeboro Committee, an offshoot of the Wolfeboro Energy Committee, conducted a Launch Event, for their solarize campaign in late February. To date, the partner installer has conducted site visits and given free bids to over 70 residents in Wolfeboro and surrounding towns.  

On April 23rd, the Committee will be hosting its next two big events. In the morning, a two hour workshop called "Solar 101", will be offered to residents throughout State. This workshop will be conducted by Andy Duncan of Lakes Region Community College and is targeted at people looking to put solar photovoltaic systems on their homes or land. 

A second workshop, offered in the afternoon, is targeted at citizens wishing to conduct a solar campaign in their towns or communities. This workshop, title Solar Team Training", will be led by Sarah Simonds of Vital Communities. Sarah has developed a model and "toolbox" that greatly helps communities expand their solar footprint. To learn more about either of these workshops, please visit  http://www.solarizewolfeboro.org/


Plainfield and Cornish Energy Committees
Plainfield/Cornish Are You Ready For Solar? Open Houses  
The Plainfield and Cornish Energy Committees will be sponsoring a number of Solar Open Houses where homeowners who are considering installing PV Solar Systems this year can learn more from neighbors who are using PV solar generated electricity.  Your neighbors will show their systems and talk about their experiences with their PV solar systems. You can see different types of systems and hear the reasons the homeowners chose their system. And you can see how well they have actually performed. This may be one of the best ways to decide if PV Solar is right for you.

Throughout the day on April 2 and April 16, you can visit one or many homes across our two towns.  Please check  the Plainfield Energy Committees website  for the most update-to-date schedule and directions. Contact  stevenaladd@gmail.com  or  mary.n.boyle@gmail.com  for more information.

Other Energy News
CDFA Clean Energy Fund to Save Franklin Over $30,000 Per Year
(Concord and Franklin, N.H.) 

The New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority (CDFA) recently completed financing a municipal streetlight conversion project with the City of Franklin, replacing nearly 500 streetlights with energy efficient LED fixtures which will save the city $31,000 annually in electricity costs. The project is part of the "Franklin Goes Green" initiative and the result of its partnership with CDFA's Clean Energy Fund and Energy Efficient Investments (EEI). Read more here.

Our Turn: Apply energy savings to energy efficiency projects
By Laura Richardson and Doug Patch
For the Monitor

When energy costs drop, we rejoice. Heating fuel, propane and even electricity unit costs have dropped, some significantly, in recent years. With gasoline well under $2 per gallon - driven by public policy initiatives, global politics, advances in technology and plentiful near-term supply - it's human nature to spend what we save in energy costs as part of our daily living.

Here's a better idea: Invest these new-found energy savings in home or business energy projects that provide long-term savings.  Read more here.

Featured Resource
Strategic Energy Action Toolkit

Is your energy committee new and looking for a place to start? Are you an established committee that is struggling to identify it's next project ? Need a way to document your discussions and decisions? Check out the Strategic Energy Action Toolkit! Contact leigh@grassrootsfund.org if you are interested in a training.


About the Local Energy Solutions Work Group (LES Work Group)
Our mission is to provide collaborative guidance and technical support to Local Energy Committees & Commissions (LEC's), municipalities, schools, and other political subdivisions* seeking to reduce energy use, minimize energy costs, and/or reduce fossil-fuel consumption.  Consider joining our efforts: contact  Leigh Cameron  for more information on the LES Work Group's efforts and opportunities for participation
About Our E-Newsletter: The monthly Local Energy Solutions E-newsletter of the NH LES Work Group is compiled and distributed by the New England Grassroots Environment Fund on behalf of the NH Local Energy Solutions Work Group.  Learn more about the Grassroots Fund.
              P.O Box 611
              Newmarket, NH  03857
              leigh@grassrootsfund.org
              603-905-9915