Hydropower, Solar

New Jersey Healthcare Agency Goes Solar

MONOC, the largest emergency medical services agency in New Jersey, has flipped the switch on a 119 kW solar energy system that will generate about 20 percent of its electricity needs and contribute to a cleaner, healthier environment.

MONOC, the Monmouth Ocean Hospital Service Corporation, is believed to be the only major healthcare organization in the state to invest in such a renewable energy system. MONOC provides ambulance and paramedic services for more than 100 municipalities in New Jersey, as well as medical and specialty care transport programs for over 20 hospitals in the state. For Vince Robbins, chief executive officer of MONOC, it was a natural next step in his personal and professional commitment to improving the environment. “Our business is healthcare. Besides helping people in emergencies, we have a responsibility to do everything we can to contribute to the health of our residents by reducing man-made pollution,” said Robbins, who has led MONOC since 1990. The roof-mounted solar energy system at the Wall Township headquarters was designed and installed by Dome-Tech Solar of Edison, a company providing solar energy solutions to businesses and corporations. The solar panels are supplied by RWE Schott Solar. Tom Kuster, president of Dome-Tech Solar, said more than 700 solar panels were installed on the roof of the MONOC building to produce 119 kilowatts of energy. On a sunny summer day, solar energy could generate as much as 20 percent of the electricity needed to run the building, which is in use 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In addition to these benefits, Kuster cites the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities Clean Energy Program, which also encourages and supports solar energy usage with a number of financial incentives and technical support. The Clean Energy Program offers rebates to defray up to 60 percent of the initial cost of a solar energy system. Once the system is up and running, the Clean Energy Program also supports the sale of Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs): clean energy credits that can be sold to electricity suppliers in New Jersey that need to invest in a minimum amount of solar energy to comply with New Jersey’s Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). “There are enormous benefits to installing and using solar energy, both from the tangible cost savings on a company’s electric bill and the intangible but tremendously positive commitment to the environment today and for the future,” Kuster said.