State & Stakeholder Newsletter, Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Volume #8, Issue #6

Editor: Jane Pulaski

The IREC State & Stakeholder Newsletter tracks a range of market-oriented news, services and outreach tools valuable to the renewable energy community. This free newsletter is distributed semi-monthly to email subscribers and published on IREC’s website. If you have comments or if you would like to submit a news item, email Jane Pulaski.

If you want the best news about what’s going on in the states and cities, get IREC’s State & Stakeholder newsletter.

Thanks for reading.

In this Issue…

–State/Local Headlines (IREC States, SAI cities, Interconnection/Net Metering)

–Interview of the Week: Solar America City/San Jose: Do you know the way…

–Current and Best Practices: IREC’s Renewable Energy Training: Best Practices and Recommended Guidelines

– Extra Extra: April 1st deadline for presentation and poster submissions for 3rd national workforce education conference




About this Newsletter/How to Subscribe

State/Local News

(1) CALIFORNIA – New PV Rebates Available for Multi-Family Housing

The Multi-Family Affordable Solar Housing (MASH) Program provides rebates of $3.30/W for PV systems that offset common area loads, and rebates of $4.00/W for systems that offset tenant loads. This program, a new component of the California Solar Initiative, targets affordable multi-family housing (see DSIRE record).

(2) New CSI Program Handbook Changes Become Effective April 1, 2009

On March 2, 2009, CSI Program Administrators filed advice letters with the CPUC to implement a few of the statewide program eligibility requirements adopted by the California Energy Commission in 2008. Proposed changes to the CSI Program Handbook will modify requirements for inverter-meters, shade calculations, field verification and enhancements to the energy efficiency audits currently required of customers under CSI Program rules. If approved by the CPUC, these Handbook modifications are expected to take effect when the new CSI Program Handbook is released. CSI Program Administrators will implement the new requirements no later than July 1, 2009 (from CSI March 2009 enewsletter).

(3) COLORADO – Boulder Readying Climate Smart Loan Program

Modeled after similar municipal financing programs in California, Boulder County’s Climate Smart Loan Program will allow homeowners to receive low-interest loans from the county which will be repaid through a special assessment on their property taxes. Unlike the current California programs, these loans may be used to finance more than just PV; they may also be used for efficiency improvements, solar water heat, small wind turbines, geothermal heat pumps, wood stoves and solar pool heaters. Program applications will be available April 1, 2009 (see DSIRE record).

4) GEORGIA – Electric Co-Op Unveils Solar Rebate Programs

GreyStone Power, an electric cooperative in Georgia, introduced rebate programs for solar water heating and photovoltaics (PV) in March 2009. A $500 rebate for solar water heating is available to customers regardless of their current method of heating water. The PV rebate is equal to $450/kW-AC for systems to 10 kilowatts in capacity (see DSIRE record: PV rebate; solar thermal rebate).

(5) NEW JERSEY – BPU Released Straw Proposal for Offshore Wind Carve-Out

In 2008, Governor Corzine released a statewide Energy Master Plan (EMP) which establishes the goals and strategies to place New Jersey at the forefront of a growing clean energy economy. The EMP specifically calls for a minimum of 1000 Megawatts of Off-Shore Wind capacity to be developed by 2012 and a minimum of 3000 MW of offshore wind by 2020. New Jersey’s Board of Public Utilities recently released a straw proposal on how to meet this target by establishing an Off-Shore Wind carve-out as part of the Renewable Portfolio Standards for Class I resources. This would make New Jersey the first state in the Nation to adopt an offshore wind carveout. The Straw Proposal proposes a schedule to meet the targets and the establishment of an Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Certificate (OREC) to assist in financing the development of Offshore Wind consistent with the Governor’s Energy Master Plan. A Public Hearing will be held on March 26, 2009 in Trenton, NJ. More information is available at or by contacting

(6) NEW MEXICO – Xcel Energy Offers Customers Payments for SRECs

On March 23, 2009, Xcel Energy began accepting Solar*Rewards applications from its customers in New Mexico. Under this program, Xcel will pay a production incentive of $0.20/kWh for the renewable energy credits (RECs) produced by new PV systems with a rated capacity between 0.5 kW and 100 kW. Xcel will buy solar RECs for 14 years for systems up to 10 kW, and for 10 year for systems between 10 kW and 100 kW. Xcel will also buy RECs from larger systems (up to two megawatts) through an RFP process (see DSIRE record).

(7) SOUTH DAKOTA – New Law Allows “Conserved Energy” to Meet Renewables Goal

South Dakota has enacted legislation (S.B. 587) that allows “conserved energy” to meet the state’s existing renewable energy and recycled energy goal. South Dakota’s Renewable, Recycled and Conserved Energy Objective is a voluntary objective (as opposed to a mandatory standard); there are no penalties or sanctions for retail providers that fail to meet the goal (see DSIRE record).

(8) TEXAS – Austin Energy Lowers PV Rebate Levels

Austin Energy has reduced rebate levels for residential and commercial photovoltaic (PV) systems from $4.50/W to $3.75/W. Rebates for non-profit entities remain at $4.50/W. The municipal utility has also revised the maximum rebate level for residential customers from $13,500 per customer per year to a total maximum of $50,000, redeemable during one year or in pieces over several years.” (see DSIRE record)

(9) TEXAS – Utility Unveils Solar Water Heating Rebate Program

Oncor’s Solar Water Heating Incentive Program provides rebates of $600 to $1,500 to electric customers that install solar water heaters to supplement existing electric water heaters. The rebate may be used for new home construction if the home is not equipped with gas service. In addition, a special low-income program offers rebates of 95% of the installed costs (up to $3,800) for qualifying customers (see DSIRE record).

(10) WISCONSIN – We Energies Revises Solar Incentive Offerings

We Energies offers its customers a rebate of $0.75/kWh of estimated first-year AC system output. The investor-owned utility formerly offered a production incentive of $0.225/kWh for 10 years for new PV systems. The utility’s solar water heating program provides an incentive that matches the incentive received by customers through the state Focus on Energy program (25% to 35% of installed costs). The matching solar water heating incentive was formerly available only to not-for-profit entities (see DSIRE records: PV rebate; Solar Thermal)

(11) WISCONSIN – Focus on Energy Offers Grants for Large Renewables

Focus on Energy Opportunity Grants are designed to provide incentives for systems that are too large to participate in the Focus on Energy Cash-Back Rewards Program or Implementation Grant Program. Focus on Energy Opportunity Grants are competitive and are generally capped at $250,000 per customer per year. The deadline for applications is May 27, 2009 (see DSIRE record).

Interview of the Week: Solar America City/San Jose: Do you know the way…

Solar Illumination 1: Evolution of LanguageOK. I know what you’re thinking. Just because I grew up associating San Jose with a Dionne Warwick song from the 1970’s doesn’t mean that I’m oblivious to the San Jose of the 21st Century. I know San Jose is the epicenter of the Silicon Valley. Home to entrepreneurs and technogurus, innovators, VC’s and angels, the largest city in Northern California wears the ‘Capital of Silicon Valley’ moniker as a badge of honor, but isn’t stopping there. Now, the Capital of the Silicon Valley wants to be known as the Capital of the Solar Valley. MORE

Current and Best Practices: IREC’s Renewable Energy Training: Best Practices and Recommended Guidelines

In the renewable energy field, training and education programs are being developed at a blazingly rapid pace. How do applicants learn the right skill sets to be successful in the new workplace? How do instructors know what to teach? How are institutions and organizations able to participate in delivering qualified training venues? This IREC publication brings together recommended training guidelines, training criteria, assessment tools, task analyses, credentialing programs, and other related resources for renewable energy training programs. MORE Extra Extra! April 1st deadline for presentation and poster submissions for 3rd National Workforce Education Conference

2009 Workforce Conf Logo 250Don’t miss out; there’s a few days left to submit your presentation or poster for the 3rd National Workforce Education Conference in Albany, NY, November 18-20, 2009. There are three ways you can participate in the 2009 Workforce Education National Conference – you can submit a proposal for a Presentation, a proposal for a Poster, or become a Sponsor. Presentations will be grouped into 90-minute sessions organized around a common topic. Posters will be on display starting with the Reception on the first night of the conference and will continue to be shown throughout the second day of the conference. Sponsorships are available giving your company or organization visibility before and during the conference. Be part of this ever-growing event by going toConference Home for information and details. MORE


(12) Renewables RFPs

A number of new renewables RFPs are posted at DOE’s Green Power Network. Scroll down to sign up to receive RFP updates.

(13) NYSERDA Funding Opportunities

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has several Program Opportunity Notices (PONs) on the street. To see full details on any of these solicitations, visit the NYSERDA website and scroll through the listings to find them:

  • PON 1060, New York Energy Smart Loan Fundsm invites financial institutions to participate in and customers to apply for low interest financing for energy efficient improvements, new construction, and renewable technology projects. For information, contact NYSERDA at 866.NYSERDA or by email.

    Expiration: 7/31/09

  • PON 1098,Wind Incentives for Eligible Installers is a first-come, first-served Financial Incentives for small wind systems that offset customers’ electric usage (end-use). For information, contact NYSERDA at 866.NYSERDA or by email. Expires 12/31/09 or until funds are fully committed, whichever comes first.
  • PON 1050: Solar Electric Incentive Program provides cash incentives for the installation of new Solar Electric or Photovoltaic (PV) systems by Eligible Installers. For information, contact NYSERDA at 866.NYSERDA or by email.

    Expiration: 12/31/09

  • PON 1176: Renewable, Clean Energy, and Energy Efficiency Product Manufacturing Incentive Program offers $10M to expand the level of manufacturing of renewable, clean, and energy-efficient products in New York State. Proposals will be accepted through June 30, 2011 by 5:00pm (ET) or until funds run out, whichever is first. Proposals will be evaluated on a first come, first served basis as they are received. Contact Jennifer Harvey at (518) 862-1090, ext. 3264 or


(14) APRIL 1st DEADLINE APPROACHES: Call for Presentations & Posters Now Open for New Ideas in Educating a Workforce In Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency: 3rd National Conference Set for November 18-20, 2009, Albany, NY

There are three ways you can participate in the 2009 Workforce Education National Conference – you can submit a proposal for a Presentation, a proposal for a Poster, or become a Sponsor. Presentations will be grouped into 90-minute sessions organized around a common topic. Posters will be on display starting with the Reception on the first night of the conference and will continue to be shown throughout the second day of the conference. Sponsorships are available giving your company or organization visibility before and during the conference. Be part of this event by going toConference Home for information and details.

(15) DOE Issues NOTA for Solar America Showcases; Deadline to apply is March 31, 2009

Tom Kimbis reminds us that the deadline to apply for the Department of Energy (DOE)’s Solar America Showcases project is March 31st. The funding amount for Solar America Showcases is up to $500,000 of technical assistance per award. Applications received prior to the end of each quarter (June 30, September 30, and December 31) will be reviewed during the following quarter.

(16) NABCEP Announces Updated Solar PV Installer Certification Eligibility Requirements

Recognizing the dynamic nature of the renewable energy industry, NABCEP’s Board of Directors has updated the training-related eligibility criteria a candidate must meet in order to sit for the Solar PV Installer Certification Exam.

(17) Clean Energy States Alliance (CESA) Offers Webinar on State Clean Energy Program

CESA will offer the webinar, ‘How to Design an Effective Clean Energy Program: A Blueprint for Success,” on Thursday, April 2, 2009, from 1-3 pm EDT. Hear from leading state clean energy program managers on best practices for advancing renewable energy with new stimulus funding. The webinar is free, but registration is required. Deadline to register is Friday, March 27, 2009. Visit the CESA website for registration information.

(18) Solar ABCs Seeks New Advisory Committee Members

The Solar America Board for Codes and Standards seeks nominations for its Advisory Committee. The Solar ABCs Steering Committee expects to add up to five new members and especially seeks nominations representing BIPV (and/or AC modules), utilities, and local government (such as Solar Cities representatives). To nominate yourself or someone else, send a letter to Larry Sherwood explaining your background and why you would like to serve on the Solar ABCs Advisory Committee. The deadline for nomination letters is extended to April 23, 2009.

(19) Renewable Energy Specialist Position at Appalachian State U Beginning Summer ’09

Appalachian State University is looking for a renewable energy scientist/ engineer who will coordinate and participate in the activities of the Western North Carolina Renewable Energy Initiative, which is a program area within the Appalachian State University Energy Center. The activities will be undertaken throughout the western 24 counties of North Carolina, with the hub of activities centered at the Appalachian State University Energy Center. Review of applications will begin April 15 and continue until the position is filled. Applications must include a letter of application, current vitae, most recent transcripts (official or unofficial), and the names, mailing addresses, email addresses, and phone numbers of three references. Applications will be accepted by e-mail or by post. For more information, contact:

Dr. Dennis Scanlin, Search Committee Chairperson / 828-262-6361. Send applications to:

Dr. Todd Cherry, Interim Director, Appalachian State University Energy Center, ASU Box 32131, Boone, NC 28608-2122.

(20) NREL Energy Analysis: Solar Leasing for Residential Photovoltaic Systems

This publication examines the solar lease option for residential PV systems and describes two solar lease programs already in place.

(21) Joint LBNL/NREL report, “PTC, ITC, or Cash Grant? An Analysis of the Choice Facing Renewable Power Projects in the United States”

The purpose of this report is to both quantitatively and qualitatively analyze, from the project developer/owner perspective, the choice between the PTC and the ITC (or equivalent cash grant) for a number of different renewable power technologies. Technologies analyzed include wind, open- and closed-loop biomass, geothermal, and landfill gas projects.

(22) TREIA to Offer PV and Solar Thermal Training with Brooks and Guineyon April 24-25th

They’re not a musical duo, but Bill Brooks and Bil Guiney will be in Austin for two days of PV and solar thermal workshops with current information on installation and code compliance for photovoltaic and solar thermal systems for installers, inspectors, engineers, plumbers, electricians, architects, plan checkers, fire officials and others. Special discount rates available for TREIA members.

(23) The Bill Sinkin Solar Technology Award is Accepting Nominations

The deadline for nominations to be received for the City of San Antonio’s first annual Green Building Awards has been extended until Friday, April 3. Winners will be announced at a special awards ceremony at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, May 8at the International Center, 203 S. St. Mary’s Street. The awards will celebrate builders who have made significant strides in improving the performance of their buildings, as well as, specific construction projects. Awards will be offered in several categories within the divisions of commercial and residential construction. Applications can be downloaded. Submit completed entries electronically to Liza Meyer

(24) If You’ve got PV, The Wharton School Wants to Hear From You

The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is conducting an in-depth study on solar homeowner preferences and ways to increase the use of PV nationwide. Your input is highly desired to support this educational effort. It’s a short one; take two minutes to respond (from the March 2009 ASES Sunbeam Newsletter).

(25) SBIC Presents its 2008 Beyond GreenTM High Performance Building Awards

Last month in D.C., winners of the Sustainable Buildings Industry Council’s (SBIC) 2008 Beyond GreenTM High-Performance Building Awards were honored on Capitol Hill as part of a Congressional briefing intended to recognize outstanding initiatives and real-world applications that shape, inform, and catalyze the market for high-performance buildings.

EVENTS Calendar

For a full listing of events, click the calendar icon on the IREC home page.

About this Newsletter/How to Subscribe

The State & Stakeholder Newsletter is published electronically on a semi-monthly basis by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc.. To subscribe to this newsletter, click here and follow the instructions. There is no fee for subscriptions. If you have comments or news items, please send them to Jane Pulaski.

Disclaimer: The Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) does not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product or process that is referred to or linked to in this newsletter. Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply IREC’s endorsement or recommendation.


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