Solar energy is well known for being clean, efficient, and abundant. It’s no wonder, then, that many operators have found the benefits of this renewable energy source to far outweigh any disadvantages posed by initially high system installation costs. New technological developments have made solar energy systems more accessible than ever and state and federal government are now in full support of those wishing to make the change. Spurred on by tax incentives and the ability to sell stored, unused energy back to the local grid, homeowners and business operators are more readily looking toward solar energy as a viable alternative to traditional power sources.

One such business owner has taken the plunge and installed an extensive solar energy system at his storage facility. Kenny Alves of Dartmouth, Massachusetts has installed a system consisting of more than 1,300 photovoltaic panels on his Cross Road Storage facility at 50 Cross Road. This system will produce more than enough energy to support the facility, giving Alves the option to sell excess energy credits to utility companies, third party energy suppliers, and fellow business owners.

Alves’ choice to install his 417-kilowatt system was partially influenced by the incentives offered to businesses and homeowners by the state of Massachusetts. In 2010, Massachusetts began working toward a goal of 250 megawatts of solar power installations, which was met in 2013. Since that time, Massachusetts announced a new goal of 1,600 megawatts installed by 2020. To entice residents and businesses to install these systems, the Massachusetts state government offers enrollment in the SREC (Solar Renewable Energy Credit) program, allowing solar power system owners to sell energy in the form of credits.

This arrangement works due to the fact that one third of the energy provided by utility companies in Massachusetts must come from renewable sources. To compensate for any discrepancy in these percentages, each company must choose to either pay a fee, known as an ACP (Alternative Compliance Payment) fee, or purchase SRECs from renewable energy system owners. Because the current ACP rate is $350 per 1,000 kWh, it is significantly cheaper for utility companies to purchase SRECs. This makes Alves’ system a veritable gold mine.

The money his company will save on utility bills combined with the revenue produced by selling SRECs means that the system will pay for itself within the first three years of its operational life. This return on investment greatly surpasses the return produced by the cellphone tower already installed on the Cross Road Storage property, making solar power a more clear investment for a large return. Now, because of local interest, his success, and the savings fellow storage owners could get from similar systems, Alves has founded the company Greenside Energy to install solar power systems on storage facilities across southern New England.

Greenside Energy logo

“Our goal is to educate self storage owners in the benefits of solar energy,” said Alves. “This is a reachable, realistic goal and one that can greatly increase month-to-month profits. Greenside Energy can bring these benefits to your facility.” Greenside Energy works with local partners to provide a quality product and can offer installation quotes, savings projections, and education in the federal and state government incentives available to business owners and residents.

The quick payback on your investment in solar energy makes this energy alternative more desirable than ever. This fact, and the fact that your business can gain a competitive edge in the increasingly popular green market, is certainly a positive to be considered. No matter where you live, if you’re interested in renewable energy sources, it could be worth your while to check into local incentive programs and the overall cost of installing a solar energy system.

Birdseye view of Cross Road Storage

About Greenside Energy

Born out of a combined experience in commercial real estate and the self storage industry, Greenside Energy was founded to provide turn-key solar installation with your business in mind. Our team can facilitate every stage of a solar power project, including the design, installation, and education necessary to getting the most out of your location’s taxes and regulations. Greenside is a single solution to all things solar power, so let us exceed your expectations.

Ken Alves ( - 401-626-6378