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Mayor Walsh Unveils New Boston Solar Map

September 16, 2014

Mayor's Office

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Mayor's Office

Mayor Martin J. Walsh today launched Solar SystemTM Boston, a new map which enables homeowners and businesses to quickly and easily understand their roof’s solar potential and installation cost estimates. With over 12 MW of solar PV installed in Boston producing roughly enough power to supply 2,000 homes, the new solar map is one more tool to accelerate the adoption of solar and help Boston meet its goal of installing 25 MW of solar by 2020.  

“Going solar is increasingly an attractive option for Boston homes and businesses,” said Mayor Walsh. “With solar prices plummeting, and Massachusetts having some of the best incentives in the country, this map will introduce the benefits of solar to a broader audience.”

Solar SystemTM Boston is a partnership with Mapdwell®, a Boston-based  M.I.T. spin-off that looks to advance collective sustainability through information, education, and choice architecture, to provide accurate and accessible information about going solar. The tool has mapped all 127,000 buildings in Boston for their solar potential and found that Boston has a potential for 2.2 GW (gigawatts) of solar power. While there are barriers to putting solar PV on every building with good sun access such as roof age and financing constraints, this map confirms the significant potential for solar to expand rapidly in Boston as installation prices continue to drop.  

 “The City of Boston prides itself on using data and innovative mapping technology to have a positive impact ,” said Jascha Franklin-Hodge, Chief Information Officer for the City of Boston. “Solar SystemTM Boston will make it easier for residents to take action to increase the use of sustainable energy in the City.”  

The City will be conducting a solar PV feasibility analysis of all its municipal buildings this fall through a separate contract. After finding the buildings with the most potential to install solar PV, the City will begin exploring the next steps to installing solar PV.  

 “Understanding our options to adopt and implement green building strategies is an important part of the City’s Climate Action Plan,” said Brian Swett, Chief of Environment, Energy and Open Space. “Not only will this new map help Bostonians go solar, but it can help residents, businesses and the City save money as well.”  

The City is currently updating its Climate Action Plan, which after a year-long public engagement process, will be available for public comment in November. The plan will include existing and new strategies to reach the citywide goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050, as well as preparing for the impacts of climate change. To learn more, visit: http://www.cityofboston.gov/climate/bostonsplan/.  

Solar SystemTM Boston is the result of a collaboration between Greenovate Boston, the City of Boston’s Department of Innovation and Technology, and Mapdwell®. To view Solar SystemTM Boston, please visit www.mapdwell.com/boston.  

About Greenovate Boston Greenovate Boston is a collective movement to ensure a greener, healthier and more prosperous future for the city by meeting Boston’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050. Visit http://greenovateboston.org for more information.

About the City of Boston’s Department of Innovation and Technology The Department of Innovation and Technology is the City of Boston’s enterprise technology organization that provides solutions to empower business partners across City departments and deliver services more efficiently and effectively. DoIT is focused on connecting the City, engaging and empowering citizens, improving business processes, working collaboratively and continuously innovating.