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It was a momentous afternoon at The Hall in Saturday as the Band Association marked, ceremonially it is true, the installation of the Solar Panels, a first for the Parrsboro area.   While many might have wondered why the occasion was being marked when the Solar Panels had not made it to the roof, the plan marking the occasion had been put together much earlier to recognize and acknowledge the efforts of those who had worked so hard for over two years to put this project together.   However what was not anticipated when the planning moved ahead were a couple of hiccups and of course, the uncooperative weather.

Doctor Solar moved ahead as quickly, and as safely as weather permitted once the final administrative hurdles had been overcome and as fate would have it, with all the preliminary set up work completed,  the company arrived and those attending were able to witness first hand the installation of the first panels.  They returned again on Sunday,  and hoping to finish putting in place the last of the 104 individual panels, completing the installation phase.

                                                                                                  More of the panels in place on the West roof as of the end of Sunday

This was a joyous occasion as the project was one of only 18 in the province approved in 2017 and is one of the few which have actually moved forward to completion.   Aspirations of many of the groups were positive but the difficulty of putting financing in place had proved daunting for many of the approved projects.

However through the efforts and diligent work of Bruce McCulloch and Johannes Hiesberger, Treasurer of the Association, investors were located and with a substantial investment by the Band Association itself, the project moved ahead.     This $107,000 project will, over the next 20 years and beyond, be providing approximately enough power (41,113 kwH) to the grid, enough energy to power a dozen or so Nova Scotia residences as well as the energy needs of The Hall.

MLA Tory Rushton was on hand to help recognize the significance of this achievement, having spoken of it from the floor of the house in the previous week and presented Chairman Rob Bentley with a certificate of recognition for this remarkable achievement.     Rob spoke briefly of the long history of the Board’s desire to move forward in some way to make the activities of The Hall more   ‘green’ and it’s commitment to this goal over the years which is now coming very visibly to fruition.   The dedication of the Board to its’ goals is remarkable and has culminated in this remarkable achievement.

                                                                            MLA Tory Rushton spoke to the group having already spoken about the project on the floor of the House

Bruce McCulloch also spoke briefly of the efforts of the Board to achieve this objective and of the need for participation by more groups such as the Band Association all over the province to help with the reduction of carbon emissions by reducing reliance on coal fired electricity generating stations.   He also spoke of how this entire programme has to be staged carefully to permit the introduction of this ‘green’ energy to the Nova Scotia power grid in a sustainable manner and that the methodology of the Association could be used as a model for other groups wishing to participate in the programme.

                                                                                                        Bruce McCulloch speaks on the significant nature of this project

The ‘formal’ presentations concluded with Rob Bentley inviting Bruce McCulloch to throw the ceremonial switch, after assuring him that doing so would not be shocking to those working installing the panels, which lit up an, of course, green light.

Once the final panels are in place the entire array will be connected to the Nova Scotia power grid and an announcement  this successful conclusion will be made in the near future.