Tuesday, May 20, 2008

There may be one further delay on finishing one of the house’s systems, and this one I will welcome. As you’ll see from the following notice sent out by the New England sustainable energy Association, the State of New Hampshire’s legislature has passed a bill establishing rather generous financial incentives for installing exactly the kind of solar electrical generation system I’ve contracted for.

The reason for the possible delay is that to be eligible for the rebate, the system has to be constructed after July 1, the date at which the bill becomes law, assuming the governor signs it, which he’s expected to do, and that funding is secured, which will probably happen given the energy crises and global warming we’re going through.

Slightly edited, here’s the text of the NESEA’s jubilant email to the sustainable energy community :

Fantastic News!!!

Thank you all so much for your continued support and patience through the passage of HB1628. New Hampshire now has a financial incentive for small renewable energy systems! Some final tweaking through the senate has clarified some of the language, and we thank you for all of your input, as well as the consistent support from the Public Utilities Commission and Office of Consumer Advocate, and so many of the legislators that supported this effort. We do anticipate that Governor Lynch will sign this bill into law.

A quick overview of the bill:
* $3/watt up to a maximum payment of $6000, or 50% of system costs, whichever is less, per "facility"
* one-time payment
* 5kW and smaller systems qualify
* photovoltaic, wind, microhydro, and other renewable electricity generating systems qualify
* built on or after July 1st, 2008
* located on the owner's property
* 10% of the Renewable Energy Fund will be available for this program, to the extent that such funding is available - see below for more details
* assumed to be first come, first served, although the application process cannot start until the bill is law, and no payments can be made until the Fund is actually funded
* verification of parts and labor costs, that certified equipment meets safety standards of ANSI and UL or similar, and that local zoning and inspections are met
* Must be connected to the utility grid - this is a senate amendment
* Also amended is that the Public Utilities Commission may establish additional incentive or rebate programs for thermal and renewable energy projects.

State law mandates that utilities need to add growing percentages of renewable energy to the mix they deliver to their customers, ultimately closing in on 25% by 2025. When the utilities cannot buy those "green" electrons on the market, or generate them themselves, they pay an Alternate Compliance Payment (ACP), a fair and mutually agreed upon payment specifically for the purpose of encouraging generation of renewable energy, as defined by law.

I will be one of the generators of said renewal energy.

This program could not have gained the momentum it did without your support of it and your support of the NH Sustainable Energy Association.

Many thanks!
The NHSEA Legislative Committee

Given the fact that I sold my house in Boston after the foreclosure crisis had begun and that I had to accept a reduced selling price, this little financial break is extremely welcome. The delay will be for just under six weeks and is more than worth it. The foundation posts have been set into the ground and are all ready to go, so as soon as July 1 arrives, I’ll have one of the first photovoltaic systems in the state to qualify under this new incentive program


We played this spring’s operas to two very good houses last weekend at the Mass College of Art. The double bill was Socrate by Eric Satie (best known for the Gymnopedies for piano as orchestrated by Debussy) and A Last Goodbye, a newly commissioned gay-themed work in its premiere performances.

Intermezzo, the company that’s the only theatrical job I’m maintaining in my “retirement,” is now firmly established in Boston’s operatic scene to the point where the critics now call us to make sure they’ll have tickets waiting for them at the box office. This time we had reviewers from the Boston Globe, The Boston Herald, the Boston Phoenix and the web-based The Edge.

The Globe’s review came out yesterday and was very positive. The only glitch is that for the third time in my career in Boston, even though the program clearly gave my name as William Fregosi, the Globe’s reviewer credited my design to Jim Fregosi, former baseball player, then team manager, and some degree of second cousin to my father. I’ve always been grateful to Jim on one level—because of him there’s at least a chance I’ll get my name spelled correctly. But these reviewers need to learn that not every Fregosi in this country is named Jim!


Work that’s going on up at the house is the construction of the bridge . . . .

. . . . and the first coat of stucco covering the Styrofoam insulation. The finish coat will consist of a textured, warmer color.

This is Colby, the plasterer's dog, who likes to walk around with a hunk of branch in his mouth for extended periods of time visiting everybody on the site. After that's over it's serious rest time.

I spent most of the afternoon and part of the morning pulling rock out of the pits and out of the piles left by the excavator as he prepared for the solar array footings. Our ledge often shatters into flat strata and we need huge amounts of flat rock to lay the walls for the planters and raised beds we want around the house. Right now I am pretty exhausted but it’s a good kind of tired, caused by exercise and getting something accomplished.


This is just irresistible, and so completely true.

thank you for the update
i enjoyed the cartoon!
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