Renewable Energy Incentives: Part Three

If you live in Delaware, New York, Florida, Vermont, Massachusetts, New Jersey or Rhode Island, you can save big bucks on a solar- or wind-powered system.

| April/May 2005

  • Solar Energy
    Solar energy is a great way to save on your electricity bill.
    Photo courtesy MOTHER EARTH NEWS edtiors

  • Solar Energy

Renewable Energy Incentives

Buying a renewable energy system is more affordable than ever thanks to rebates and tax breaks from state governments and local utilities, and even some rebates from private companies spending on where you live, renewable energy subsidies can reduce the cost of a wind- or solar-powered system by more than half of the total expense. In Rhode Island, for example, residents can receive a rebate of $5 a watt for up to 50 percent of the cost of a photovoltaic (PV) system. In other states, such as New Jersey, rebates of up to 70 percent of system costs are available

This article is the last in a three-part series summarizing some of the best subsidies in 17 states for installation of wind, solar water-heating and PV systems. Part I, in the December/January 2005 issue, covered Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. Part II, in the February/March issue, covered Illinois, Minnesota, Texas and Wisconsin. Incentives are available in other states, but these renewable energy programs stand out in a growing crowd.

As natural gas and oil prices rise and electric grid problems mount, an increasing number of cities and states are setting ambitious targets for boosting renewable energy production. New programs continue to pop up across the nation — visit here to learn more about the offers summarized in this article, or for programs in your area. Other good sources of information are your local utility company and state energy office


Delaware recently bumped its renewable energy grant to 50 percent of the cost of a wind or solar system — up to $22,500 for residential systems; $3,000 for residential solar water heating; $100,000 for nonresidential wind-powered turbines and $250,000 for a nonresidential PV or solar water-heating system. To be eligible, you must be a customer of Conectiv Power Delivery, or your utility company must contribute to the Green Energy Fund.

Conectiv Power and Delaware Electric Cooperative offer net metering for renewable energy systems 25 kilowatts (kW) or less. Some utilities and electric co-ops do as well, so check with your electricity supplier for participation.

New York

New York’s investor-owned utility companies will generate 25 percent of their electricity from renewable resources by 2013 as a result of a state Public Service Commission order in 2004. Renewable energy currently accounts for about 19 percent of the state’s electricity supply


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