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MORRISTOWN, N.J. – SunDurance Energy and Tioga Energy today announced they have been selected as a team by the Morris County Improvement Authority (MCIA) to develop, install, own, and operate 3.2 MW of solar power systems on 19 Morris County school buildings and county government facilities in 2010. The county will purchase electricity produced by the solar systems through a 15-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Tioga. SunDurance will provide turnkey design and installation services. This first of its kind program will employ $22.3 million in low-interest bonds issued by the MCIA and guaranteed by the county to finance solar projects. The low cost of the bonds, coupled with federal tax incentives available to Tioga as a private developer, will result in inexpensive solar electricity estimated to save the county over $2 million in energy costs.
"Through this program, our participating schools and county facilities will be able to significantly cut their energy bills without incurring any direct out-of-pocket expenses," said Morris County Freeholder William Chegwidden, liaison to the Improvement Authority. “Tioga’s project financing and development expertise, the capability of their New Jersey based integration partner SunDurance Energy, and the compelling economics of the offer put forth by the team made them the clear choice for this exciting project.”
In June 2009, Morris County Improvement Authority received approval from the State Local Finance Board to issue up to $30 million in bonds, guaranteed by the county, to finance a renewable energy pilot program. The initiative calls for renewable energy sources such as solar panels to be installed, on buildings or on the grounds of public schools and municipal facilities. In addition to the county government, the Morris County Park Commission and the Boonton, Mountain Lakes, Parsippany-Troy Hills, West Morris Regional and Morris Hills Regional school districts are participating in the program.
“This innovative public-private partnership puts Morris County on the vanguard of solar power development in New Jersey, already one of the leading states in the use of solar energy nationwide,” said Paul Detering, CEO of Tioga Energy. “We hope to see many other New Jersey communities adopt this creative and cost effective means of deploying solar energy and further contribute to achievement of the state’s ambitious renewable energy goals. Tioga is proud to be chosen by Morris County as a partner in this ground-breaking effort.”
“As a New Jersey based company, we are very excited to be involved in a local project of such scale and extraordinary value to Morris County and the State of New Jersey,” said Al Bucknam, CEO of SunDurance Energy. “It brings jobs, electricity cost savings, and increased energy independence for local government to the region, and is a great example of how government and the private sector can achieve win-win results.”
Through solar Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), communities can adopt strategic renewable energy development without the high upfront costs and project execution complexities that make solar power projects difficult for most to realize. Under the terms of the MCIA pilot program, Tioga Energy, as the project developer will own, operate and maintain the solar projects, selling the electricity produced by the systems to the County at fixed price. Tioga qualifies for Federal tax incentives which would normally not be available to public entities, and in turn can pass along the savings to the County and provide clean electricity at a lower rate than the cost of retail electricity from the local electric utility.
For more information about our Custom Solutions contact your SunDurance representative.
“This innovative public-private partnership puts Morris County on the vanguard of solar power development in New Jersey, already one of the leading states in the use of solar energy nationwide”