By Ramona du Houx
Isle au Haut has received $211,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to install a solar power array, enabling the island to receive 100 percent of electricity from clean, renewable solar power. This funding was awarded through the USDA Rural Development’s Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).
“Located seven miles off Stonington, Isle au Haut is a small, remote island in the Gulf of Maine,” said Senators Collins and King. “This funding will provide this rural island community with clean, renewable, locally generated power. In doing so, the island will be able to lower its electricity rates for years to come.”
Once installed, it would provide 100 percent of electricity needs on the island for about 25 years.
Residents of Isle au Haut currently pay an average of $0.32/kWh, as well as a $16 monthly meter fee. That’s more than three times the national average for electricity.
This investment will allow Isle au Haut Electric Company to purchase and install a new 311 kW solar array to supply 100 percent of the island’s electricity needs for the next 25 years, resulting in projected annual savings of approximately $88,000.