Maine's Solar Challenge Goes beyond Governor's Roof

April 28, 2005

Governor John Baldacci is working to improve Maine's solar industry, so he started by having solar photovoltaic (PV) system installed that would power the governor's office. The PV system was donated by a coalition of Maine citizens in response to the Governors' Solar Challenge, an East Coast effort to persuade the region's officials to lead by example and demonstrate the opportunity for individual action to create a cleaner, more sustainable energy mix across the country.

Individuals and groups in each state raise money and donate a solar electric system to their governor's office. A Blue Link 480 PV array feeds electricity into the state house and powers the governor's office. The appliance plugs into a home and generates as much electricity as the computer, stereo, TV, microwave, and coffee maker use. It's designed to encourage broad participation in solar energy.

Governor Baldacci has also proposed LD 1586, which is currently in the Committee on Utilities and Energy, and provides for rebates, sales tax exemptions, and income tax credits to purchase and install solar water heating and solar air heating systems.

For more information, read the April 28 issue of Renewable Energy Access.