PALMER, Mass. - October 29, 2019 - (Newswire.com)
In April 2013, local wholesale lumber distributor, Sherwood Lumber Corporation, was awarded $500,000 by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MDOT) via the first round of their Industrial Rail Access Program (IRAP) to subsidize a $1.7-million-dollar investment towards a new on-site rail siding project. This project, completed in late 2018, aimed to increase the number of simultaneous rail cars handled from 3 to 20 and to add other improvements to the loading dock and laydown areas. It is expected to increase operational efficiency by 30 percent, reduce operating costs by 30 percent and increase carloads by 100 percent.
By expanding rail access for Commonwealth industry partners, the project will also stimulate local economic development and increase the shipment of goods using freight rail. “This rail spur extension project is a testament to progressive policy and leadership across the board,” said Palmer Town Manager Ryan McNutt. “We are thrilled by the positive economic impact this will have in our community and are proud to continue our longstanding relationship with local Sherwood Lumber Corporation.”
“MassDOT is pleased to see the completion of this project which was supported by IRAP funding to help increase rail access and economic growth throughout the local community,” said MassDOT Rail and Transit Administrator Astrid Glynn. “We are proud to partner with companies to leverage private and public resources for rail infrastructure projects which not only strengthen our transportation systems, but also help reduce congestion, minimize greenhouse gas emissions, and promote job growth and economic opportunity.”
Ecogy Energy Community Shared Solar System
Ecogy Energy’s 542 kW DC Rooftop Community Shared Solar Project Located on Sherwood Lumber’s Warehouse in Palmer, MA
In 2018, Sherwood Lumber partnered with Ecogy Energy to install a 542 kW DC rooftop solar system on the rooftop of its Palmer Warehouse. This distributed energy project, worth more than $1.5 million dollars, was fully financed by Ecogy.
The responsibilities of installing and maintaining the array are handled by Ecogy Energy and local MA partner, Invaleon Technologies. Sherwood Lumber is simply leasing their rooftop space to generate a new revenue stream while increasing access to clean energy for their neighbors. “We’re honored to partner with such an experienced and dedicated solar financier and owner-operator,” said Andrew Goodman, President and CEO of Sherwood Lumber. “Ecogy provided a comprehensive and unique solution to fit our needs here in Palmer and we applaud for them for taking into consideration local concerns.”
The project received a Statement of Qualification in February 2019 through the Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) program, a long-term solar incentive program which encourages strategic siting of solar generation on rooftops and parking lots. With many ground-mount projects already built in Palmer, Ecogy’s mission to utilize wasted roof space and avoid clear-cutting forests allowed for a perfect solution. Town Manager Ryan McNutt went on to say, “As proud leaders in the state’s transition to clean energy, the Town of Palmer is excited to see a company like Ecogy work and partner with a local business to bring solar to our community in a way that not only reduces costs to industry but for residents as well.”
The rooftop solar system will function as a community solar array, allowing anyone in Palmer to sign up for solar energy credits. The solar credits are sold at a discount, which means local residents save money on their utility bills while doing their part for the environment. “As a company, we are invested in bettering the environment while bettering local communities,” said Jack Bertuzzi. “Palmer is a Massachusetts leader, and we look forward to completion of the project so that Palmer residents and businesses can start saving on their energy bills.”
Contact: Joel Santisteban, Development Manager, Ecogy Energy, firstname.lastname@example.org, 516-754-8518
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Original Source: Sherwood Lumber Infrastructure Projects Highlight Investment in Local Palmer Economy