Solar Energy in Branford
Branford is committed to increasing energy efficiency, reducing energy costs for the town, businesses, and residences, and contributing to the State of Connecticut’s clean energy goal of 100% renewable-sourced electricity by 2040.
- The Branford High School and the transfer station have solar arrays
- Branford is negotiating a contract with Green Bank to install solar panels on three other schools
- As of 2019, 279 residences have solar panels
- The 4.3-acre Tabor solar farm generates 1.37 MW of electricity
- Branford’s new fire house has a ground-source heat pump as well as solar panels
- Branford has recently established a Sustainability and Compliance Office
Branford Strategic Priorities
- Conduct a campaign advertising residential solar energy
- Provide resources to homeowners on solar panels, qualified installers, financial incentives
- Collaborate with the planning and zoning commission to streamline the approval process for residential solar installation and provide a roadmap to installers and homeowners
- Increase the number of residential solar installations
To further our solar goals, the City is partnering with SolSmart. SolSmart is a national designation program funded by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative. SolSmart is designed to recognize communities that have taken key steps to address local barriers and “soft costs” to implementing solar energy.
Branford has achieved SolSmart Bronze designation and is working to qualify for the Silver level.
Finding a Solar Installer
A trusted installer is an invaluable partner, guiding you through the process of design, permitting, installation, and inspection. GoSolarCT.com has many useful resources, including a guide to hiring a solar installer. To search for a local installer, click here. Local Green Bank vetted installers include:
· Aegis Solar Energy (Branford)
· CS Energy Systems (Meriden)
· Earthlight Technologies (Ellington)
· EcoSolar Installations (Branford)
· Encon (Stratford)
· PosiGen (Bridgeport)
· Sunlight Solar Energy (New Haven)
The Clean Energy Committee suggests that homeowners solicit multiple installation bids and does not endorse any one installer.
Financing and Incentives
There are multiple ways to finance solar panels for your home. These include purchase (with or without a loan) and lease; each of these options has its advantages and disadvantages. There are also federal and state incentives to encourage residential solar energy.
What is Net Metering?
Net metering allows utility customers who connect approved, renewable generation systems – such as solar panels – to the electric grid to sell electricity back to the utility company. In Connecticut the amount of solar energy uploaded to the grid is limited by law, so your installer will request electric bills from the previous year to help design your array.
Solar PV is new to many Branford residents. Please click on the links below to help you make informed solar purchasing decisions.
SEIA Consumer Guide to Solar Power
One Page Summary
You might want to share this summary of the Branford solar initiative with others. The Questions Homeowners Should Ask could be useful when you speak with solar installers.