The solar loan from Key Equipment Finance was structured to allow Community Energy to build and own the project and qualify for the solar investment tax credit. The project, the largest higher-education-sited solar array in Pennsylvania, was made possible by a $500,000 Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority (PEDA) grant.
“Financing enables innovative solar projects like the one at Elizabethtown College to make it across the finish line,” said Doug Beebe, vice president, energy finance for Key Equipment Finance. “By using a solar loan to enhance purchasing power, Community Energy is helping achieve energy cost savings for the college, environmental benefits for the community and a clean energy learning lab for students.”
Elizabethtown College is a private coed institution located on a 203-acre campus in south central Pennsylvania. The college has executed a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Elizabethtown Solar, the wholly owned subsidiary of Community Energy Solar created to hold the project assets.
“Community Energy is pleased to bring renewable energy at this scale to Elizabethtown College,” said Brent Alderfer, president, Community Energy. “The college put sustainability goals into action, generating its own power right on campus using only the sun.”
The solar installation, situated on 10 acres owned by the college in Mount Joy Township, became operational this winter and will be capable of supplying more than 20 percent of the college’s annual power.
“Elizabethtown College started working on this project more than a year ago as part of our commitment to sustainability,” said Bob Wallett, vice president for administration and finance at Elizabethtown College. “With the help of the PEDA grant and the dedication of our partners, we now have a solar array that provides educational opportunities to our students, environmental benefits to the community and financial benefits to the college.”
Namasté Solar built and installed the project’s 8,170 solar panels in collaboration with Advanced Solar Industries. The solar installation is expected to produce more than 3 million kilowatt hours per year – enough to power the equivalent of almost 300 homes.
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