Rocky Hill, CT In recognition of their contributions to the deployment of clean energy and demonstrated leadership in their industries in 2020, the Connecticut Green Bank has announced the honorees of their annual PACEsetter Awards and the Smart-E Loan Top Performers. Since 2012, the Green Bank has supported the creation of more than 23,000 job years and over 50,000 clean energy projects, thanks to our network of contractors, interested home- and building owners, and lending partners.
“Connecticut’s clean energy workforce has been strong and growing since 2015, until the pandemic caused a major setback. While the path to a full recovery will be long, our contractors are safely back to work — creating jobs, combatting climate change, and reducing energy burdens for families and building owners across the state. With this backdrop, we are particularly excited to recognize these projects and contractors that highlight the diverse ways our programs made a difference in our communities in 2020,” said Bryan Garcia, president and CEO of the Green Bank. “From boutique inns, churches, and community centers, to our homes and neighborhoods, clean energy is powering our daily lives and helping us prosper. In the face of a challenging year, these leaders demonstrate that we can create a thriving future in Connecticut.”
PACEsetter Awards Recipients
The Connecticut Green Bank’s PACEsetter Awards acknowledge contractors, building owners and other stakeholders who are advancing the green energy movement through C-PACE, and whose leadership establishes a “pace” for others in their field to follow. The award winners are a driving force behind the success of the Green Bank’s Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) program, which has surpassed 330 closed loans and $184 million in total close project financing that are estimated to save $295 million in energy costs. These are the sixth annual PACEsetter Awards.
C-PACE is an innovative program, administered by the Green Bank, which helps commercial, industrial, and non-profit property owners access affordable, long-term financing for qualifying energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements that are repaid through a voluntary assessment. As the program grows, more Connecticut businesses achieve lower energy costs and increase their bottom-line.
The Green Bank acknowledged both contractors and building owners across multiple categories for their work in 2020:
· Outstanding Projects, 2020
o Con Edison Solutions and Bridgeport Islamic Community Center, for their 75 kW solar installation at the Community Center, a Purchase Power Agreement repaid through C-PACE, which is producing electricity and helping to reduce costs.
o Omega Church in New Haven and Complete Building and Mechanicals of Guilford, for their HVAC and lighting project – Complete Building and Mechanicals first C-PACE project - which will help the Church maintain safe, healthy operations year-round.
o Marriot Residence Inn in Stamford, for their new construction project which is an outstanding example of the ability of C-PACE to support ground up new construction projects in the hospitality industry. This is also an example of Connecticut’s thriving open market for C-PACE, as Greenworks Lending, an active capital provider, made nearly $6.5 million in financing available to support the Marriot’s plan during COVID-19 and the economic challenges that it created.
o West Lane Inn, a boutique 17-room inn in Ridgefield, and Eastern Mechanical Services, Inc. of Danbury, an HVAC contractor serving Fairfield County since 1985, for their project that removed an old oil heating system and replaced with efficient electric heat pumps that harness renewable energy (heat) from the environment, reducing costs and increasing guest comfort. This was the contractor’s first C-PACE project.
o Marcus Communications, for a first-of-its-kind C-PACE project at their communications tower in Bolton. The solar arrays installed will provide clean and reliable energy power for communication and emergency services to a variety of customers and clients. This is the first time that C-PACE has been used to finance a project at a communications tower in the United States, according to PACENation, a national nonprofit association that advocates for PACE financing.
· Accelerating PACE, 2020:
o Verogy, a commercial solar developer headquartered in Hartford that has integrated C-PACE into their business model and became the first developer to offer their own C-PACE-backed Power Purchase Agreement, demonstrating a transformative approach to the market.
Smart-E Loan Top Performers
For 2020, the Green Bank is recognizing 17 Smart-E Loan Top Performers. In 2020, the Top Performers helped over 250 families across Connecticut make home energy improvements – allowing them to save money, reduce their carbon footprint, and live more comfortably in their homes. The Smart-E Loan offers homeowners no money down, low-interest financing for more than 40 qualifying projects that reduce energy use and lower utility costs. Since 2013, the Smart-E loan has enabled more than 4,000 families to make improvements with a projected lifetime energy cost savings over $70 million.
In partnership with nine participating local lenders, the Top Performers’ projects surpassed $4 million in closed Smart-E Loans. Financed projects included insulation and window upgrades, high efficiency heating and cooling solutions, rooftop solar PV, health and safety improvements, and more.
The Smart-E Loan Top Performers were chosen based on criteria including more than just closed loans. These contractors worked hard to integrate the Smart-E loan into their training and marketing, while providing high-level customer service. Despite the challenges created by the pandemic, these contractors were able to continue to increase access to clean energy solutions for homeowners.
The 2020 Top Performers (in alphabetical order; * denotes 2019 Top Performer recognition):
· Absolute Air Services LLC* (Middletown)
· Benvenuti Oil* (Waterford)
· EcoSmart Home Services* (Berlin)
· Energy Unlimited, LLC (Bolton)
· Glasco Heating & Air Conditioning Inc* (South Windsor)
· Highland Window Co. (West Hartford)
· Home Comfort Heating and Cooling Solutions, LLC* (East Haven)
· Home Comfort Practice* (Stratford)
· Homestead Fuel and Energy Solutions (Ellington)
· King Energy, LLC (Willington)
· Link Mechanical Services Inc* (New Britain)
· Nutmeg Mechanical Services Inc* (Manchester)
· R&W Heating Energy Solutions LLC* (Salem)
· Ralph Mann & Sons Inc. (Ansonia)
· Ryan F. Murphy Heating & Cooling LLC* (New Milford)
· SolvIt Home Services* (Plainville)
· Viglione Heating & Cooling Inc* (East Haven)