Badger goes 100% solar with 486-kilowatt array

Project will save $1.6 million over 25 years

Rebecca Hamilton, left, co-CEO for W.S. Badger Company shakes hands with Deputy Secretary of State David Scanlan after the company’s founder, Bill Whyte, signed papers registering the Gilsum firm as a B corporation under a new state law in 2014. (Photo by Bob Sanders)

With a flip of the switch, W.S. Badger has transitioned to 100% solar power for all of its operations. The 486.7-kilowatt array, which consists of 1,384 solar panels installed by ReVision Energy, will produce zero carbon emissions.

One of the largest rooftop and ground-mount photovoltaic arrays in the region, it is expected to generate approximately 600,000 kilowatt-hours of clean solar electricity per year, the equivalent of taking 61 cars off the road, planting 338 acres of trees, or removing over 590,805 pounds of carbon out of the atmosphere.

“Clean, renewable energy is the future, and our future begins now. Switching to solar has been a long-held dream. This amazing array is a daily reminder of Badger’s commitment to reducing its carbon footprint,” said Rebecca Hamilton, co-CEO of W.S. Badger Company, a manufacturer of  a range of personal care products.

“It’s also a smart financial decision, especially in these uncertain times, as entering into a solar power purchase agreement (PPA) meant no capital outlay on our part to make it happen,” said Hamilton. “This is a model that businesses can and should seriously consider. We’re grateful to ReVision Energy and it’s impact investors, our partners, the community, customers, and employees for it a reality.”

The project is made possible through a PPA under ReVision Energy Solar Impact Partners, with no up-front cost to Badger. Under the PPA, the impact investor Blue Haven Solar, with the assistance of lending partners NH Community Loan Fund and NH Charitable Foundation, will own and operate the solar array for a minimum of five years to take advantage of available tax incentives. Badger will purchase solar-generated electricity at a negotiated rate below the cost of traditional grid electricity. After five years, the Company will have the option to buy the system at a significant discount and continue generating free solar power for decades.

The project is estimated to save Badger $1.6 million over the 25-year warranty period and $3.8 million over the 40-year lifespan of the system. And not only will the array provide significant cost savings for powering its 23,000 square-foot-facility, but it will also allow the Company to support the community by sending some of the energy produced to its neighbors—a win-win for all.

During periods of peak power demand in the spring and summer months, the system will provide up to 100% of the power required for Badger’s manufacturing facility in Gilsum, ReVision said, helping to reduce demand on the local power grid and provide the facility with a reliable energy source.

“When it comes to reducing the impact of how we consume and use energy, this is a major milestone for Badger,” said Hamilton. “We’ve always had a forward-thinking approach to sourcing, formulating, and packaging our products. Everything we do, we strive for green. Now we can proudly state that our beautiful post and beam facility and the products we make on-site are powered by the sun.”

Categories: Energy and Environment