The Solarize Bethel campaign was coordinated by Integrity Energy and the Bethel Energy Committee. It was started with a meeting in the Bethel, Vermont town hall on January 18, 2019, and it continued for three months, ending on April 18. After the initial meeting, promotion was done by the organizers in a series of events, including operating tables at the local Shaw’s Supermarket and meeting groups of people in private homes. Notably, they ran a one-day class at Bethel University. Much of the campaign was aimed at educating people.
Amos Post, one of the owners of Integrity Energy told us, “We had a good response and many people who were interested were able to go forward, getting their own solar energy systems.” All told, the campaign produced contracts for fifteen systems in Bethel and the surrounding towns. Together, they added up to 110 kilowatts (kW).
All but one of the systems are to be grid-tied. The one that will not bes not grid tied was an upgrade to an existing off-grid system, and so needed no battery. One other system had a backup battery and could be detached from the grid to operate as an off-grid system, if necessary; it uses a new Rolls AGM battery. The systems will be set up to be net metered wherever possible. Twelve of the installations are for rooftops. Three will be ground mounted.
All fifteen systems are being built around Q Cells solar panels. Post told us, “They have a good warranty, great efficiency, and competitive price point.” Inverters came from SolarEdge. The racking was made by IronRidge. Rolls AGM batteries are being used for the grid-tied system with battery backup; they were purchased through RAE Storage Battery. The off-grid system used its existing batteries.
The solarize campaign ended on April 18, three days after installation of the first system had begun. The entire set of solar arrays is projected to be complete during the first week of July.
Integrity Energy typically installs about thirty solar systems per year. These range in size from the smallest home installations to commercial arrays. The largest Integrity Energy has done so far was 87 kW. The company has two full-time employees, the owners Amos Post and John Mattern, and three part-time employees.
Integrity Energy is based in Bethel, Vermont. Its website is ienergyvt.com.