Community Solar Garden Performance

 

 

COMMUNITY SOLAR GARDEN PERFORMANCE


Stay up to date with the province’s first Community Solar Garden in Amherst. Watch as clean energy is generated daily and review monthly production since day one. 

Currently, residential subscriptions are fully allocated and any applicants will be added to our waitlist. Commercial subscriptions are still available.


Garden Status
ONLINE
Subscriptions Available
YES
kWh
generated since
kWh
Last Updated:
How to use this graphic
See daily generation values over the last 30 days, or choose the Monthly tab to see production values for each month in the last year. Hover your mouse over the graph to see the detailed energy production in kWh.
Environmental Benefits

As clean energy is generated at the community solar garden it reduces carbon emissions from the grid, contributing to a greener future for the province. The values below are an estimate of the carbon emissions offset by the project to date.
## Tonnes CO2 reduced
## Trees grown
## Cars converted to battery electric

 

SUBSCRIBE NOW


 

If you’re interested in taking part in the community solar garden program, subscribe now!

We’ll review your application and send you a subscription offer by email summarizing the amount of solar energy you'd like to receive, your monthly charge, and estimated credits. You'll have 5 days to confirm your subscription. Once you're officially enrolled, you'll receive a welcome email with additional information, and you'll begin to see the charge and credit on your power bill. There's no long-term contract, and you can cancel at any time. 

Please note, there are limited spots available in the program. Currently, residential subscriptions are fully subscribed and any residential applications will be added to our waitlist. Commercial subscriptions are still available. Applicants on the waitlist will be contacted as soon as more solar energy becomes available.

 

 



 

 

Frequently Asked Questions


What is a Community Solar Garden?

A solar garden is a large collection of solar panels in one location. Our Community Solar Garden in Amherst is made up of 4,550 panels. It can help you save money as you don't have to worry about the upfront cost of solar panels or installing and maintaining them. It's also more accessible as you don't have to own a home or install rooftop panels - you can take part if you live in an apartment or condo. Subscribing customers play a role in our transition to cleaner energy.

Where is the solar garden located?

The community solar garden is in the industrial park in Amherst, Nova Scotia.

Do I have to live in Amherst to apply?

All NS Power customers can apply. Eligible customers in Amherst will be accepted first, with remaining spaced being filled by customers from the rest of the province. 

How do I sign up?

You can apply for a subscription by filling out the form on this page.

How much of my electricity bill can be offset with solar energy?

You can apply to offset up to 100% of your annual electricity consumption with solar energy, up to a maximum of 100 kW. For the average home, 7 - 10 kW will cover 100%.

We're working towards 60% renewable energy by 2022 and 80% by 2030. That means when you plug in your appliances, heat your home using electricity, or switch to an electric vehicle, you're plugging into a grid that's getting greener over time. The community solar garden gives customers an opportunity to offset the remaining portion of their energy use with clean energy generated from the solar garden.

How much will it cost?

The subscription fee, called the Monthly Solar Capacity Charge, is $6.86 per kilowatt (kW) of solar.

The cost will be offset by a monthly credit, called the Solar Energy Credit, which is based on your share of power produced. A customer is credited at a rate of 5.603 cents/kWh of solar energy generated (in 2022, rising by 2% per year).

For example:

If your average monthly bill is $100, with 100% solar offset, the subscription would be 4 kW. Therefore, your monthly charge would be $27.44 (4 kW x $6.86), or $329.28 annually.

A subscription this size is estimated to generate 5,514 kWh in 2022, worth $308.96 (5,514 kWh x $0.05603/kWh). Your net costs in the first year would be approximately $20, averaging $1.66 a month.

Long term subscribers will begin to see net savings anticipated in year 6 and cumulative savings in year 9.

The credit always depends on the amount of solar energy generated and will vary each month. Use our community solar calculator to help you see the range of potential benefits of the program.

Credits are estimated and not guaranteed.

What does a subscription look like on a power bill?

The solar subscription fee (called the Monthly Solar Capacity Charge) will be added to your regular power bill. Community solar charges and credits (called the Solar Energy Credit) will be added under the miscellaneous charges section and are subject to HST. 

Why does the total amount of monthly credits change every month?

The Solar Energy Credit is based on the actual energy generated from the sun, so it will vary based on the season and the weather. The value of the credit (5.603 cents/kWh in 2022) will remain the same through the year, rising each year by 2% each January 1.

Why is the monthly credit higher in the summer?

As daylight hours are longer in the summer, the Community Solar Garden will be able to generate more electricity, resulting in a greater credit in the summer.

How will this work if I am an equal billing customer?

You will continue to have equal billing amounts for your regular utility service, however the solar energy credit will fluctuate based on the season and how much energy the Community Solar Garden is producing. Therefore, you will see some variability in your monthly bill. 

Will everyone be approved? What is the criteria for approval?

Enhanced Net Metering customers are not eligible to subscribe to this program. If you become a net metered customer after subscribing to the Community Solar Garden your subscription will be cancelled.  

Customers who consume over 10,000 MWh/year are not eligible to subscribe. 

How will I know if I’ve been approved?

Once you are approved for the program, you will be sent a confirmation email with the details of your subscription size, monthly payment, and estimated credits. You must click on the link to confirm your subscription within 5 days. You will get a reminder email at day 3 if you have not responded. Once you complete this step you will get an email welcome package. 

What happens if it sells out? How will I know when the pilot is full?

If the pilot if filled when you apply you will receive an email advising that you are on the waitlist. As space becomes available a representative will reach out to the waitlist to confirm if you are still interested in joining the program. 

What is the commitment once I sign up? Can I cancel my subscription?

There is no long-term commitment. You can contact the Smart Grid team to cancel at any time (smartgrid@nspower.ca).  

Subscribing to service from the Community Solar Garden is voluntary. 

How do I change or cancel my subscription?

Contact the Smart Grid team at smartgrid@nspower.ca or 902-428-6236 to modify or cancel your subscription.  

What happens if I move?

Your subscription can move with you as long as you remain a customer. If you cancel utility service at any time, for any reason, the subscription will be cancelled and you will be subject to any waitlist that may exist upon reapplication.  

 

 

Contact Us

Have more questions about our Community Solar Garden Pilot or our Smart Grid Nova Scotia program? Contact the team at smartgrid@nspower.ca or phone 902-428-6236.