NORESCO Project Will Save School District Nearly $2M with Energy Updates


NORESCO, a national leader in energy efficiency, resiliency and infrastructure solutions, recently completed a two-year energy efficiency upgrade project in the Comsewogue Union Free School District (CUFSD) at Clinton Avenue Elementary School. The upgrades, which included installing 477 kW of photovoltaic solar arrays on the roof of the elementary school, will provide CUFSD more than $1.9 million in energy savings over the next 18 years.

“Working with NORESCO has really been a pleasure from the beginning of the project to where we are now. I wish all contracts we had were this easy,” said Susan Casali, associate superintendent for CUFSD. “As a school district, we have to be conscious of the impact we have on the environment. If we can reduce our electricity bill and our carbon footprint, it’s a win-win for everyone.”

Under NORESCO’s project management, SUNation Solar Systems installed the solar photovoltaic arrays on the roof of the 67,000-square-foot elementary school, which is expected to save CUFSD nearly $85,000 in energy costs in the first year alone. The project’s expected carbon emissions reduction is equivalent to removing 435 cars from the road.

“We are proud that NORESCO chose to work with SUNation, and that we can add CUFSD to our growing list of municipal and school district projects on Long Island,” said Mike Bailis, SUNation co-founder and chief sales officer.

NORESCO researched and negotiated options for installing a renewable energy system at the school through a self-funding energy performance contract. The team found that solar photovoltaic rebates available from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s (NYSERDA) New York Sun Initiative program would help offset the cost of the installed arrays. NYSERDA’s incentive will provide nearly $72,000 in the first year, while the New York State Education Department (NYSED) Aid and Reimbursement program will provide over $1.1 million to CUFSD over the next 15 years. 

The project scope also included upgrading the electrical service with a new transformer, wiring and switchgear, and comprehensive commissioning on the new equipment to ensure all systems, including the arrays, were operating properly.

“We were excited to develop and implement an innovative solution to the district’s needs, and I am proud of our team’s ability to secure and maximize the incentives offered by NYSERDA and NYSED,” said Troy Walters, vice president and general manager, NORESCO. “We’d like to thank the district and the project team for a great partnership throughout this process. Based on the successful outcome here, we look forward to working with more school districts on similar energy saving opportunities in the future.”