For Immediate Release - June 03, 2009

Templeton Light and Water Plant Joins Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust

First municipal light plant to join the Trust will soon qualify for clean energy grants, rebates, and other incentives

BOSTON - Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Ian Bowles today announced that the Templeton Municipal Light and Water Plant is the first of the Commonwealth's 40 municipal light plant communities to join the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust under provisions of the Green Communities Act of 2008.

As a new member of the state's renewable energy finance agency, Templeton will soon be eligible for grants, rebates, and other incentives that help homeowners, businesses, and public facilities install clean energy systems. The community will also benefit from technical expertise and other Trust assistance to further wind, solar photovoltaic, hydroelectric, and other renewable energy projects.

"By making this commitment to a greener future for its community, Templeton is helping to make Governor Patrick's vision for expanding clean energy across the Commonwealth a reality," said Secretary Bowles. "The Governor and I commend Templeton for its leadership and encourage other municipal light plant communities to follow its example in joining the Renewable Energy Trust."

The Green Communities Act established a mechanism for municipal lighting plant communities to participate in the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust Fund, which was previously restricted to communities served by investor-owned utilities (NSTAR, National Grid, Western Massachusetts Electric Company, and Unitil). As part of the Templeton Municipal Light and Water Plant's new membership to the Trust, a small surcharge - equal to approximately $4 per year for an average household - will be added to Templeton electric customers' monthly bills to finance renewable energy activities.

"We're thrilled to be eligible for clean energy incentives for our town," said Sean Hamilton, General Manager of the Templeton Light and Water Plant. "Our citizens and businesses are looking forward to the benefits of Templeton being a member of the Trust."

One example of the incentives soon available to Templeton businesses, homeowners, and public facilities is the Commonwealth Solar rebate program. Launched by Governor Patrick in 2008 and administered by the Trust, the program has awarded 760 rebates to date, totaling
$29 million, and covering approximately 40 percent of a project's cost. This highly successful program enables those who might not have otherwise been able to afford a solar photovoltaic system to bring the power of the sun to their house or facility.

"The Renewable Energy Trust welcomes Templeton and looks forward to continuing to work with members of the community," said Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Philip Giudice, who chairs the Trust's Governing Board. "We have much to offer and hope that Templeton and other municipal light plant communities will take full advantage of our programs."

"I applaud the efforts of Sean Hamilton and the Templeton Municipal Light and Water Plant in promoting renewable energy sources in Templeton," added Senator Stephen Brewer. "Templeton will now have the ability to obtain funding that will not only preserve the environment, but will also save its rate payers money in the future."

"I congratulate the town, and especially Sean Hamilton for his continued hard work to benefit the rate payers of Templeton," said Representative Anne Gobi. "This partnership will help pave the way for additional innovative and cost saving opportunities."