Installing solar energy helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions while minimizing electricity costs. Additionally, solar is a key component to reaching the city’s 2050 net zero goals. Currently, over 300 Melrose property owners have installed solar energy in their homes, businesses, churches, and public buildings. The combined impact of these installations is 2.3 MW of clean, local, renewable power from the rooftops of Melrose.
Why Go Solar?
- Reduce or eliminate your monthly electric bill
- Great investment that can return 15%+ annually
- Protect yourself or your organization against rising utility costs
- Lock-in your electricity costs at a lower rate
- Businesses: stabilize this line item on the P&L and increase profitability
- Homeowners and non-profits – save money and budget better for energy costs
Our partner, EnergySage, provides an online solar marketplace where consumers can get information on going solar. The online marketplace allows you to view an instant estimate of your potential solar savings, compare quotes from multiple, pre-screened installers, and select the quote that is best for you.
Visit EnergySage for more information and receive your instant estimate of solar savings.
Environmental Impacts of Melrose Solar
1,935 metric tons of carbon dioxide not released into the atmosphere, equal to:
Greenhouse gas emissions from 414 cars driven annually
CO2 emissions from 217,730 gallons of gasoline consumed
Carbon sequestered by 2,279 acres of forest in a year
Latest solar news
In October 2017 Melrose made a commitment to become a SolSmart-designated community. SolSmart, an initiative of the U.S. Department of Energy and the Solar Powering America by Recognizing Communities (SPARC), encourages municipalities to improve solar market conditions by making it faster, easier, and more affordable for residents and businesses to install solar energy systems.
Read the Melrose Mayors Solar Statement in support of solar.
Ways to Save on Transportation
Transportation choices have a huge impact on climate change and our ability to meet our goals to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Residential vehicles produce about 40% of the GHG emissions from the community as a whole, with average emissions of 6.3 metric tons per household in 2013. Melrose residents on average own vehicles with worse fuel economy than the national average, and we drive those vehicles an average of 25 miles per day (based on 2013 figures), a higher mileage than most of our neighbors (with the exception of Wakefield at 26 miles/day).
Considerations when purchasing your next vehicle:
- Don’t buy bigger than you need – if you use your car primarily to commute to work alone consider a fuel-efficient small car. Consider a car instead of an SUV, and if you need to own an SUV, make sure you buy the most fuel efficient one possible.
- Consider new technology such as hybrid, electric, and other technology entering the market such as fuel cell vehicles.
- Using electricity, hydrogen and other sources provide a much cleaner and cheaper source of power and fuel than gasoline to run your vehicle.
- Check out the electric vehicle charging stations at Cedar Park and the City Hall Plaza parking lot.
Even small improvements in fuel economy have a bigger impact when you start from a relatively inefficient vehicle, so current SUV owners have the potential to contribute a great deal to greenhouse gas reduction goals.
Driving tips to save fuel:
- Turn off your car – 10 seconds of idling uses more fuel than restarting the engine.
- Observe speed limits – each 5 mph over the speed limit on the highway consumes about 7% more fuel.
- Avoid fast starts and stops – you arrive at your destination at nearly the same time and use about 5% less fuel around town.
- Plan your trips – combing trips and avoiding traffic improves gas mileage and saves you time.
- Maintain your car – keep your tires properly inflated and change the oil and air filters as recommended by the manufacturer.
One less trip to Route 1 per household per week would save more than 2,500 MT of emissions from the Melrose community (3.7% of the transportation emissions).
Commuting to work:
- Walk for part or all of your commute.
- Join NuRide – Find others to carpool with for free through NuRide, the carpooling rewards program for individuals who take greener trips – walking, biking, carpooling, vanpooling, public transportation, or even telecommuting.
- Bike to the T – Use the new Pedal and Park locked bicycle storage facility at Oak Grove T Station. Register your CharlieCard here. If you own a folding bike, you can bring it on the train with you.
At work: Take a walk during lunch instead of sitting at your desk.
Getting around town:
- Meeting a friend for coffee or at the library? Bike and use the rack at the YMCA.
- Taking your kids to the library? Use the bike rack out front.
- Weekend sports events? Walk or bike as a family to the game.
Join a local bicycling group – some examples:
- Bike to the Sea: Local group developing a bicycle and pedestrian trail from Everett to Nahant Beach. biketothesea.com
- North Shore Cyclists: Recreational bike club with regular rides along the back roads and shorelines north of Boston. nscyc.org
- Bike Rides for Ordinary People: Free, casual, easy-paced weekend rides. bikeridesfop.org
Ways to Save In Your Home
The typical American household spends nearly $2,500 annually on energy for the home. Most of us in New England pay even more because of our long winters and relatively high energy prices. Save energy and money though easy steps you can take in your home:
Air Seal & Insulate
Air seal gaps and holes in your house. Add insulation to attic space and blown-in insulation in wall spaces. A no-cost Mass Save® home energy assessment will tell you what you need. Call our partner HomeWorks Energy, at 781-305-3319 or Mass Save® directly at 866-527-7283 to schedule one today.
Heating and cooling costs amount to over half your home’s total energy bill. Consider installing ENERGY STAR equipment with a 0% HEAT loan. Learn more about the HEAT loan through a Mass Save® home energy assessment by calling our partner HomeWorks Energy, at 781-305-3319 or Mass Save® directly at 866-527-7283.
Adjust the Thermostat
Start by lowering the thermostat one degree in the winter and raising it one degree in the summer. If this doesn’t bother you, increase the adjustments by another degree or two. Install a programmable thermostat to save over $150 a year.
Replace incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs. By replacing your home’s five most frequently used bulbs you can save more than $65 a year.
Eliminate phantom loads with power strips and timers. Even when they are not in use, many appliances continue to use energy. If you have a rarely used appliance, pull its plug when not in use.
in Cold Water
90% of the energy used to wash clothes goes into heating the water. Wash and dry full loads whenever possible.
Four people each taking seven minute daily shower, uses 51,000 gallons of water a year. Installing a new showerhead will save you more than 25,000 gallons annually.
Mass Save Heating and Hot Water Rebates
Mass Save helps Massachusetts residents save money and energy by providing rebates and financial assistance for new heating and cooling systems as well as hot water systems. These energy-efficient choices will help lower your utility bill while positively impacting the environment. Depending on your heating system, you could install new equipment and receive a rebate between $225 and $3,250.
To learn more about which options would work best for you, visit https://www.masssave.com/en/saving/residential-rebates.