Minnesota Implements Solar Energy Incentive Program

The state of Minnesota is attempting to give people an incentive to use solar energy by creating a program that will make solar energy much more affordable. Those who quality for the program will be able to install a solar energy system much more cheaply than before, and the program is looking at a ten year span with around $15 million a year invested in the incentive program. The program was created by the Minnesota Department of Commerce and launched on January 1st. Customers who are part of the investor owned utilities like Alliant, Minnesota Power, Xcel Energy and Otter Tail Power will be eligible for the program as long as they agree to install solar panels.

They will receive rebates over a period of ten years, based upon the performance. They will receive a payment each year by July 1st and it will be based upon the output of the system during the year prior. Just about everyone will qualify for these incentives and checks, as long as they meet the criteria of installing the solar panels and belonging to one of those four power companies, including residential customers, commercial customers, government clients and nonprofits. Here’s how it will work: If someone installs a 5 Kilowatt system in their home and generates 6,446 kilowatts per hour of electricity each year, they would receive a check for $2,514. That’s because they are receiving $0.39 per Kilowatt hour. They could receive more or less, depending upon the amount of energy produced.

The “Made in Minnesota” solar systems offer up to $250,000 per year total for customer rebates. These incentives can be combined with the 30% federal rebate known as the Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit, as well as a state tax exemption. So, more than half of a solar system is already paid for. There are other energy incentives and policies that may even add more to that. This means that people who choose to implement solar energy are not just going to save money over the long run, they are going to get incentives right away that make it much easier to make such a big investment.


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