About the Project:
The brick Sandy Spring Meeting House was constructed in 1817 and has been in continual use since then. The Meeting’s Community House was built in 1859 originally as the Sandy Spring Lyceum, which was used for educational lectures. The new Community House, which houses the classrooms and meeting rooms, was completed in 2018 and is a LEED-certified building.
Sandy Spring Meeting House is installing 31 kW of solar PV energy on the roof, which will produce 22 kWh of clean, renewable solar energy throughout the first twelve months of use. Over the next 20 years, the solar PV, which will be installed by Lumina Solar, will avoid the consumption of 735,025 kWh of energy not sourced from the local utility provider, mitigating 521 metric tons of carbon dioxide, greenhouse gas emissions. These energy savings will lead to a projected savings of $22,047 over 20 years in reduced electricity bills for the building.
The project will be financed through a 20-year power purchase agreement between Re-volv and Sandy Spring Meeting House. Montgomery County Green Bank will cover 70% of the installation cost. RE-volv will cover the remaining 30% of the installation cost through the Solar Seed Fund, which consists of investments made through recoverable grants and program related investments (PRI) from foundations, as well as revenues from past solar projects.
Montgomery County Green Bank’s Role
The Commercial Solar Power Purchase Agreement (CSPPA) program developed by the Montgomery County Green Bank allowed Sandy Spring Meeting House to install solar and experience the benefits of solar without upfront costs through a no-money-down rental agreement with Re-volv. In this PPA, or rental agreement, Re-volv pays for all maintenance and operations costs, while Sandy Spring Meeting House only pays for the electricity produced by the solar system at a contracted price that is less than the current electricity costs from the utility provider.
The Montgomery County Green Bank has been working closely with Interfaith Power & Light on helping faith communities go solar. See ipldmv.org/solar for more resources from Interfaith Power & Light, including a map of existing faith communities with solar and a recording of an info session on solar for faith communities.