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Solar Energy in Madawaska

For Residents

Thinking about solar? Before you make any substantial investments consider taking some of these simple steps to compound your future return on investment.

Energy Audits - Find Energy Savings & Create A Baseline
Get an energy audit with an energy auditor to identify efficiency upgrades with the greatest payback. You may qualify for a rebate on the audit with air sealing and additional rebates on other weatherization projects.

Air Sealing & Insulation - Tighten Up & Raise Your R-Values
During the audit, air leaks which reduce the efficiency of your insulation will be identified. If insulation is called for, take this next step to start saving money on heating and cooling costs. Those savings can be applied to future energy upgrades. 

Reduce Your Energy Use - Use Energy-Saving Appliances
Start small by switching to LED lights and utilize power strips to cut off power to multiple devices when not in use. Then consider upgrading to more efficient Energy Star® appliances. Check out for rebates on appliances.

The Long View - Consider Future Electricity Needs
Could upgrading to an electric cook stove, clothes dryer, water heater, heat pump, or electric car be in the cards? Review your current heating and electric bills as well as anticipated future needs with your solar installer to determine the best array sizing. It is more cost-effective to scale up a PV system for near future demands than to add panels to an existing array. 

Consider Your Solar Options

Solar at your property:
Offsite options:
  • If you rent or if a solar installation is not advantageous on your property, consider offsetting your use by purchasing Maine-based renewable energy credits for a modest monthly charge through; or 
  • Consider signing up for one of the numerous new community solar programs. See the Community Solar section below for more info. 

For Businesses

Energy needs can be a major expense to a businesses’ bottom line. Eliminating or upgrading inefficient equipment and investing in renewable energy resources can cut costs and help businesses be more profitable. This webpage shares technical and financial resources and highlights energy efficiency and renewable energy opportunities that may help keep businesses productive, reduce costs, and lessen environmental impacts. 

Loans, Grants, and Incentives

Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvement Guaranteed Loan and Grant Programs provide financial assistance to rural small businesses to purchase, install, and construct renewable energy systems, make energy efficiency improvements to non-residential buildings and facilities, use renewable technologies that reduce energy consumption, and participate in energy audits and renewable energy development assistance.

Find policies and incentives by entering your zip code at the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency.

Commercial and Industrial (C&I) Prescriptive Incentive Program offers businesses and manufacturers specific prescriptive measures for:
  • Heating Systems: high-efficiency boilers, variable refrigerant flow systems, high-performance heat pumps, circulator pumps, and programmable thermostats.
  • Lighting Solutions: replacing interior and exterior lighting and controls, and discounts on LEDs.
  • Cooling Solutions: heat pumps and refrigerant flow systems.
Commercial and Industrial (C&I) Custom Program offers free scoping audits for those eligible to develop a qualified project. It leverages private investment for projects costing between $10,000 - $1 million, or up to 50% of project costs.

Technical assistance for:
  • Distributed Energy Systems, which are systems behind the meter that reduce the consumption of grid-supplied electricity. These projects can include reciprocating engines, steam turbines, and anaerobic digesters.
  • Thermal projects that reduce heating fuel consumption may include pipe insulation, heat recovery, condensate recovery, process steam reduction, HVAC controls and optimizations, heat exchangers, and recover boilers.
  • Electrical projects that reduce electrical consumption and can include projects like compressed air systems and components, heat recovery, variable frequency drives, HVAC controls and optimization, chillers and refrigeration upgrades.
Madawaska Solar Ordinance
In the Spring of 2023 the Madawaska Select Board put a Solar Moratorium in place due to lack of any zoning or town ordinance in place to guide the growing request for information about Solar farm installations. The Moratorium was extended for 6 months at the October 2023 meeting of the Select Board so that a contracted service could continue working on an ordinance to be put forth at Town Meeting.