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Residents air concerns on clean energy, particularly solar siting, at Sunderland forum
04-01-2024 3:34 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

SUNDERLAND — Residents and clean energy advocates recently got the chance to discuss all things energy with the top House member of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy, with the siting of solar arrays holding particular...

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Proposed Colrain solar bylaw changes would add definitions, expand site plan reviews
04-19-2024 12:16 PM

By AALIANNA MARIETTA

COLRAIN — Revisions to the town’s solar bylaws that clarify what constitutes large-, medium- and small-scale projects and that expand the associated site plan review requirements are likely on tap for residents to consider at the June 4 Annual Town...


Info session on streetlight conversation planned ahead of Shelburne Town Meeting vote
04-02-2024 10:16 AM

By VIRGINIA RAY

SHELBURNE — Residents are invited to an informational meeting on Wednesday, April 17, from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Shelburne-Buckland Community Center to hear more about the planned streetlight conversion. Jeff Boettner, chair of the Shelburne Streetlight...


Greenfield’s energy and sustainability chief returns after Northampton stint
03-26-2024 5:22 PM

By ANTHONY CAMMALLERI

GREENFIELD — Less than six months after leaving her decade-long role as Department of Energy and Sustainability director to serve at the helm of Northampton’s first-ever Climate Action and Project Administration Department (CAPA), Carole Collins is...


Wendell Selectboard awaits legal review of battery storage bylaw
03-22-2024 3:51 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

WENDELL — The Selectboard is waiting to hear from town counsel before taking a stance on a potential bylaw submitted by a citizens group opposing a 105-megawatt battery storage facility proposed for the center of town.Selectboard members say they have...


Conway Planning Board OKs fee reduction for potential solar array on Roaring Brook Road
03-21-2024 4:35 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

CONWAY — As BlueWave Solar prepares to potentially expand its list of Franklin County projects by filing site plan review and special permit applications for an agrivoltaic solar array on Roaring Brook Road, the Planning Board approved a request to...


State gripped by solar slowdown: Worst year in decade for installations
03-18-2024 5:35 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

Massachusetts’ solar development just had its worst year in more than a decade in terms of new installations, but Greenfield Solar partner Claire Chang says her firm that does jobs throughout the Pioneer Valley hasn’t experienced the same downturn.As...


BlueWave pitches another agrivoltaic solar array in Northfield
03-14-2024 6:43 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

NORTHFIELD — Town residents got one of their first looks at a new proposed solar array on Pine Meadow Road while also getting an opportunity to talk to the developers on Wednesday during a Planning Board information session.BlueWave Solar is returning...


Public comment sought on responsible clean energy development
03-13-2024 6:26 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

Residents have until Friday to submit their input regarding the process by which clean energy projects are permitted in Massachusetts.An online survey is soliciting public comment on how the state should protect health, safety and community livability...


Energy storage facility opponents pitch bylaw for Wendell
03-07-2024 5:55 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

WENDELL — A group formed last year in opposition to a 105-megawatt battery storage facility proposed for the center of town is seeking the three-member Selectboard’s support of a bylaw it has crafted to try to regulate such projects.No Assault &...


$50K grant will fund geothermal heat study in South Deerfield
03-07-2024 5:38 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

DEERFIELD — With the help of a $50,000 grant, the town will explore the feasibility of a geothermal heating and cooling system for the proposed town campus project.Over the next year, Deerfield will explore the possibility of using the earth below...


Ratepayers fed up with high energy costs
02-27-2024 10:37 AM

By COLIN A. YOUNG

BOSTON — From the edge of the Atlantic Ocean in Lynn to the state’s western border in Richmond, people in Massachusetts are letting the state know how they feel about wallet-busting energy bills.“I struggle to pay my bills, my electric runs $250 a...


Hawlemont Regional School, timber farmers to launch wood bank
02-23-2024 1:43 PM

By BELLA LEVAVI

CHARLEMONT — Hawlemont Regional School has partnered with Jay Healy of Hall Tavern Farm to establish a wood bank at the elementary school, providing free wood to the broader community."I think this will be a great partnership given what the school...


Wendell’s No Assault & Batteries to host speakers on proposed battery storage facility
02-15-2024 3:45 PM

By DOMENIC POLI

WENDELL — A local group formed last year in opposition to a proposed battery storage facility is teaming up with the Friends of the Wendell Meetinghouse to host a reception and community dinner on Saturday.No Assault & Batteries is collaborating with...


MassDEP’s Clean Heat Standard poised to advance energy shift
02-13-2024 11:31 AM

By TANISHA BHAT

While Greenfield officials say the city has made considerable progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the next big step statewide will involve electrifying home heating systems, a process the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection...


UMass to lead $11.9M offshore wind center 
02-12-2024 12:53 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

AMHERST — The University of Massachusetts Amherst will lead a new $11.9 million center on offshore wind education, research and outreach to expedite development of offshore wind energy and train a national workforce to design, operate and manage the...


A case for ditching natural gas: Mothers Out Front aims to send message to legislators, utilities
02-07-2024 5:21 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

The influential lobby group Mothers Out Front took aim at the natural gas industry this week, using its monthly climate action call to encourage people to push for a future without gas.Each month, the statewide group with local chapters in the Pioneer...


Shelburne mulls heating system’s future at Cowell Gymnasium
01-26-2024 3:41 PM

By BELLA LEVAVI

SHELBURNE — The Selectboard hopes Cowell Gymnasium’s backup heating system will last long enough to make it through the initial litmus test for the newly installed electric mini splits. With the state giving out Green Communities grants to encourage a...


Montague solar forum being planned for spring
01-25-2024 11:21 AM

By VIRGINIA RAY

MONTAGUE — Residents will have a chance to weigh in on a Community Solar Action Plan and solar energy possibilities for the future during a town-wide forum being planned for the spring.Energy Committee Co-Chairs Sally Pick and Tim Van Egmond met with...


As solar array and battery storage debate heats up, Whately backs municipal zoning bill
01-19-2024 2:04 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

WHATELY — Joining several neighboring communities in the Pioneer Valley, Whately’s Selectboard has signaled its support to write a letter to the Legislature advocating for legislation that could allow municipalities more control over solar energy...


After appeal dismissed, BlueWave Solar project back on track in Northfield 
01-08-2024 1:38 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

NORTHFIELD — With the appeal of BlueWave Solar’s three arrays on Pine Meadow Road dismissed in September, the company is working with its project partners as it prepares to make progress on their installation.Stagnant for two years because of the 2021...

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