Federalsburg firehouse now powered by the sun

Federalsburg community members along with local energy companies turn on the solar panels at the Federalsburg firehouse Tuesday, Dec. 9. From left, Kenton Yoder of Paradise Energy; Jason Beiler, owner Paradise Energy; Scott Lane of Solar Lane; Federalsburg Mayor Bill Beall; David Morean, Federalsburg Town Council and project manager of the solar panel project for FVFC; Federalsburg Town Manager Richard F. Colburn; Mike Robinson, president of the FVFC; Santa Claus; project investor Peter Woicke; and project investor Steve Clineburg.

FEDERALSBURG — The Federalsburg Volunteer Fire Company’s firehouse is now powered by the sun.

The fire company contracted with Solar Lane, of Easton, to purchase all the energy needed to run the firehouse, which will be generated by a solar panel array, installed by Paradise Energy Solutions of Salisbury.

A groundbreaking was held Tuesday, Oct. 28, behind the firehouse, and the switch was flipped Tuesday, Dec. 9, to turn on the new 85 Kilowatt solar electric generating facility. The site is served by Delmarva Power. Electrical output of the solar generating facility is estimated to be 110,000 Kilowatt hours per year.

It is comprised of 285 Solar panels, each of which produces 300 watts of electricity in full sunlight. Output and operation of the Solar Generating Facility will be continually monitored and performance reported through the Internet.

The solar array is owned by Solar Lane, which paid all the installation costs. The fire company signed a 25-year contract to purchase the power generated by it from Solar Lane, rather than paying more for electricity from Delmarva Power, its current provider.

Scott Kane, president of Solar Lane, said the array will produce more energy than needed; the fire company can sell the excess to Delmarva, further increasing the energy savings the fire company will be able to spend on other costs, like equipment.

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