Ashland Solar Energy Project
For the town of Ashland, energy efficiency is no longer just a buzz word: its stimulus-funded grant has enabled the town to utilize solar energy and upgrade its water pumps at its water treatment facility.

"As a community concerned with reducing our carbon footprint and saving money for our citizens through energy reduction and clean energy projects, we are grateful for the Recovery Act funding that has made this project a reality." said John Petrin, Ashland Town Manager.

The $486K in Recovery Act funding enabled the installation of a 120-panel solar

Jeffrey Simon and Eric Aubrey
array on the roof of the DPW building which generates about 29,000 kilowatt hours annually. This will provide approximately 40 percent of the power for the water treatment facility.

Nexamp, a North Andover-based clean energy company, designed and installed the solar panels. This project is part of a stimulus-funded contract to install 13 solar array projects across the state totaling 4.1 MegaWatts of solar installation. The contract enabled Nexamp to expand from three to 62 employees and demonstrates the commitment stimulus has to re-

Jeffrey, Simon, Karen Splika, John Petrin and Mark Purple at Ashland Energy Projects
energizing the solar industry in the state.

The upgrades at the water treatment plant involved the installation of variable speed motors on the water pumps. These enable the pumps to shift speed in response to demand, decreasing output when its not needed. Assistant Town Manager Mark Purple estimated that they will cut energy costs at the treatment plant up to 40 percent.

"The utility bill at water treatment plants is frequently the largest bill towns have to pay," said Jeffrey Simon, director of the Massachusetts Recovery & Reinvestment

Ashland Water Pumps
Office. "It's amazing to me that instead of turning the pumps on and off, but putting it slowly up and down, you can save half your cost. This is a no-brainer."

Total savings translate to about $75K a year but Petrin added that the upgraded motors will also extend the life of the pumps, reducing maintenance and replacement costs.

"These are true energy savings," said Petrin