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04/05/2022 EC Minutes

2155 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH 03574

                                                         Bethlehem Energy Commission                                                      

Tuesday April 5, 2022

5:30 m at the Town Hall

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In-Person at Bethlehem Town Hall


Attending:  David Van Houten, Bruce Caplain, Scott Caise, Mary Lou Krambeer

Excused:  Josiah Chamberlain, Chuck Phillips, Dan Crosby, Melissa Elander



Mission: The Bethlehem Energy Commission was established for the study and planning of energy resources for the town. The commission will evaluate existing energy usage in the town and suggest possible improvements in energy efficiency and conservation, as well as potential clean renewable energy solutions in order to reduce expenses and increase self-reliance.

Minutes from last meeting

Public input

Profile solar project update:  TO DO:  Mary Lou will check with Dan Crosby on the April 22 possible grand opening celebration.  Perhaps we could do a dual grand opening at Profile followed by a ground breaking at the Library?

Town solar project:  Contract signed last Friday with contractors.  Project is a go.  Last week contractors met the Town Team (fire chief, highway, Tim, Sue and Steve at elementary school, Laura at library).  Library and then Highway garage, then onto BES in May.

Village District –on April 12 Dan and Bruce are going to the Village District meeting to discuss solar.

New projects — What is the next solar project?  Maybe offer community solar power (group net metering).  TBD.

BES – BES budget and warrant article passed at the March 15 annual meeting.  A warrant article for building fund capital improvements at $20,000 was passed also.  TO DO – David will check with BES to see if the solar project is considered part of the warrant article.

Town Hall energy audit: Consultants shot down the heat pump idea and wood pellet boiler (as boiler needs to be constant maintenance). Propane repair was considered the most efficient (at the time propane was only $1.32 a gallon).  We asked for a quote on a heat pump – no response yet.  We want an air to water heat pump.  At this point the propane boilers will be replaced with a common brand name with replaceable parts. HVAC suggestions we will put to the side.

Refocus on envelope of Town Building – Margaret suggested we give Shingle and Shakes a call to look at our energy audit and ask for a price.  TO DO:  David will call the company to come visit the Town Hall.

General Maintenance of Town Hall:   Town has hired a contractor to address specific items in the Town Hall.  They will look at windows in the meeting room.  Scott suggested we look at evaporator coolers (Big Ass Fans) – looks like a humidifier, might be an alternate to an energy inefficient air conditioner. TO DO:  Scott will look into.  TO DO:  Mary Lou to talk to Susan Retz about room aesthetics in light of possible renovations.

Grafton County – TO DO Mary Lou and David will attend a Tuesday morning meeting to discuss energy efficiency/renewables in the County. David suggested a $50,000 grant for each town. Town Manager of Hanover also interesting in joining that discussion.

Everything else:

  • EV Charging station seminar on April 21. TO DO:  Bruce and Scott will tune in.
  • NH Energy week April 11-15 Sign-up for this Virtual Event Series


Next meeting date. Scott will run the May meeting.  Tuesday, May 3 at 5:30 probably at the library.

Adjourned 6:20.

Bethlehem Energy Commission (BEC) is appointed by the Select Board. All meetings are open to the public.


Clerical Assistant Nicole McGrath ensures that BEC meeting notices, agendas, and minutes are posted as necessary.


To find BEC info go to:

-go to government tab

-our committee is listed under: boards and committees tab

-our meetings are posted through Nicole on: agendas and minutes tab

Nicole also posts a hard copy of meeting notices in the Town Hall and at the post office.