Solar panels that would pay for themselves

Tucker House, a local environmental group in the Ottawa region, is the proud recipient of the Community Forward Fund’s first loan.

Situated in the countryside on a former family estate, they have successfully run day camps for children in the summer and year-round programs for adults on energy efficiency and renewable energy for several years, taking over operations from a church group. Their growth has been slow and steady over the past five years as the focus has changed from faith-based to environmental, under the tutelage of a dynamic Executive Director and an engaged Carver-model board.

In 2009, the Ontario government created a Micro-FIT (Feed In Tariff) program that allows small organizations to feed electricity into the grid and be paid 80 cents per kilowatt hour.

The environmental group will use the loan to finance the purchase of solar panels. This will allow them to reduce their environmental footprint and be a role model for sustainability in the community. It will also provide them, over time, with a sustainable revenue stream. With the Micro-FIT program, solar panels would pay for themselves within 15 – 20 years and the organization needed the capital to purchase them.

Thanks to a loan from the Community Forward Fund, this dream has become a reality.