2012 Massachusetts Solar Incentives
Incentives and regulations have made Massachusetts one of the most affordable states for solar systems. Contact us at 617 500 3938 to determine which incentives apply for your situation.
Commonwealth Solar II for solar electric
Commonwealth Solar Hot Water for solar hot water
Renew Boston Solar for solar electric within the city of Boston
Renew Boston Solar for solar hot water within the city of Boston
Fed 30% and MA 15% tax credits for electric and hot water systems
Production incentive for solar electric: Solar Renewable Energy Credits
Equal value from electric utility: Net Metering parity
Commonwealth Solar II rebates.Commonwealth Solar II offers direct rebates for homeowners and small businesses. The program establishes rebates based upon size of system (15kW or smaller projects with the first 5kW eligible), components used, home value and household income. These rebates reduce the cost of a PV system by 10 to 30 percent. In conjunction with the 30 percent federal tax credit, our customers can see a savings of 50 percent of the cost of a system. SunBug Solar processes all Commonwealth Solar rebates for our customers. Current Commonwealth Solar II rebate levels:
- Base incentive: $.40 per watt (on a 5kW system, $2000 rebate).
- Additional rebate for using Massachusetts-made components: $.05 per watt (on a 5kW system, additional $250 rebate).
- Additional rebate for Moderate Home Value or Moderate Household Income: $.40 per watt (on a 5kW system, additional $2000 rebate).
- Additional rebate for location in one of the eleven communities officially affected by the June 1, 2011 tornado in Western Massachusetts: $1.00 per watt (on a 5kW system, additional $5000 rebate).
Commonwealth Solar Hot Water rebates.Commonwealth Solar Hot Water offers direct rebates for single family homeowners and buildings with up to 4 units. The program establishes rebates based upon size of system and components used. These rebates reduce the cost of a standard Hot Water system by approximately 15 percent. In conjunction with the 30 percent federal tax credit and smaller state credit, customers will see a savings of over 50 percent of the cost of a system. SunBug Solar processes all Commonwealth Solar rebates for our customers. Current Commonwealth Solar Hot Water rebate levels:
- Base incentive: $25 per collector times the collectors SRCC kbtu rating (for a standard residential-size two collector system, $1200 rebate).
- Additional rebate for using Massachusetts-made component of $200.
- For larger Hot Water or Combined Heat and Hot Water systems, rebate capped at $3,500.
Solar Renewable Energy Credits.The Department of Energy Resources runs a Solar Renewable Energy Credit, or SREC market. This program offers an on-going production incentive for homeowners and businesses with photovoltaic systems. For every megawatt hour (MWh) of electricity produced, participants earn one SREC which are then be sold to electric utilities needing to meet state renewable energy mandates.
An SREC does not represent electricity itself - solar system owners make their own electricity and experience the associated utility savings independent of the SREC program. SRECs are an additional financial incentive for Photovoltaic electricity producers.
SRECs are bought and sold on an open market. However, there are price support mechanisms put in place by the DOER to create a ceiling and floor values for SRECs.
The ceiling is determined by the fine levied on utilities for not meeting the solar standard. This is called the Alternative Compliance Payment (ACP) and for 2011 is set at $550 per megawatt hour (or SREC).
The floor is established by the DOER’s Solar Credit Clearinghouse, an auction of last resort should an SREC not sell. This Solar Credit Clearinghouse values SRECs at $300 each. The DOER has established an “opt-in term” for that Clearinghouse, based on when a PV system was installed. The current opt-in term is 10 years.
Prectically this means SRECs add a minimum of 28.5 cents and a maximum of 55 cents to the value of each kilowatt hour of electricity produced, dramatically affecting the solar investment. Contact SunBug to learn more about Massachusetts' SREC market.
Net Metering parity.As of December 2009, all photovoltaic system owners served by the major utilities receive full retail value when they generate more power than they need. Under the Green Communities Act, utility companies must now compensate customers for excess electricity at the retail rate rather than the lower wholesale rate. Additionally, customers may allocate their credits to other customers, allowing those without facilities to take advantage of net metering benefits as well. With this provision in place, Massachusetts now has one of the strongest "net metering" laws in the country.
Contact SunBug at 617 500 3938 to see how these rebates apply to your specific situation.