Solar panels for city hall? Ogdensburg City Council to see presentation Monday
Friday, July 11, 2014 - 2:44 pm

BY JIMMY LAWTON

OGDENSBURG – Hoping to win a competitive bid grant from a state authority, Ogdensburg will entertain a solar array presentation from a Rochester consulting firm Monday.

Larsen Engineering, Rochester, will give a presentation on a potential solar array project that could save the city more than a $1 million to $2 million over a 25-year period. The company provides planning, grant assistance and implementation of clean energy projects.

Also helping with presentation will be RER Energy, Reading, Penn., which implements commercial energy projects.

City manager John Pinkerton said the project includes building a solar array that would be metered and used to reduce electric costs at municipal buildings.

“We’ve been talking for over year about the possibility of implementing solar panels near our land fill,” he said.

Pinkerton said presentation will rehash a proposal given last year, which failed to win a bid grant offered through NYSERDA.

Pinkerton said the grants go to municipalities based on the bid percent they are willing to contribute.

“The trick is to find that sweet spot. That’s what our consultants are going to help us do,” he said.

Pinkerton estimated the project could cut costs either through savings or avoidance by as much as $2 million over 25 years, but added that the estimate was a rough figure.

He said estimating energy savings over a long time period is difficult due to price fluctuation and new technologies.

“This is something we have been after. Monday’s presentation will rehash the project and bring city council up to speed,” Pinkerton said.

Ogdensburg city council will meet at 7 p.m. at city hall.