CALIFORNIA – Solar Water Heating Incentives Heat Up
After two years of relatively lackluster interest in the CSI Thermal Program, the CPUC has voted to sweeten the pot. The CPUC’s recent decision establishes separate, higher incentive rates for single-family residential systems and for commercial and multi-family systems. These changes have not yet been incorporated into the program yet.

COLORADO – Solar Gardens Set to Grow Like Weeds
Xcel Energy’s Solar*Rewards Community Program provides incentives for developing community solar gardens. The program provides a performance-based incentive for SRECs generated by such systems and allows customers to net meter via community solar. Within 30 minutes of opening this program, Xcel Energy received applications totaling more than three times the 2012 capacity allotment for standard-offer incentives. Xcel is still accepting competitive bids for projects over 500 kW.

HAWAII – Commercial Solar-Thermal Rebate Level Tweaked
Hawaii Energy offers incentives for residential and commercial solar water heating as part of the state’s public benefits fund.  The residential rebate level remains unchanged at $750 per system, but the commercial rebate level has changed from $50 per 5,000 BTU/hr de-rated capacity to $250 per 12,000 BTU/hr de-rated capacity.

ILLINOIS – Solar, Wind Rebates Tantalize
The Illinois DCEO has announced that the state’s rebate program for solar and wind will likely re-open next month — two months later than anticipated. A two-week notice will be issued before the program re-opens. This program has been dormant since September 2011.

MASSACHUSETTS – New Law Raises Net Metering Roof, Requires Interconnection Timelines
Massachusetts enacted legislation (SB 2395) last month increasing the state’s aggregate capacity limit for net metering from 3% to 6%. The new law also exempts certain facilities from the net-metering cap and defines anaerobic digestion facilities that are eligible for net metering. The Massachusetts DPU must develop and implement an enforceable standard interconnection timeline for distributed generation facilities by November 1, 2013. The new law also bolstered the state’s existing long-term contracting process for renewables.

NEW YORK – Remote Net Metering Authorized for Micro-Hydro
New York has enacted legislation allowing remote net metering for agricultural and non-residential micro-hydro facilities. As is the case with remote net metering for agricultural and non-residential solar and wind facilities, micro-hydro facilities must be sited on land owned or leased by the customer and within the same utility service territory and load zone as the customer’s other meters.

NEW YORK – Customer-Sited Tier Regional PV Incentives Regional No More
NYSERDA has issued a new solicitation for solar and biogas projects under the program formerly known as the Customer-Sited Tier (CST) Regional Program. Under the new program, the portion supporting PV projects is now available statewide, while the biogas portion remains limited primarily to downstate New York. The maximum incentive was increased from $3 million to $6 million per applicant per round, but the maximum per project remains $3 million. The application deadline for the first round is November 8.

NEW YORK – Personal Clean Heating Fuel Credit Resurrected
New York’s personal tax credit for biodiesel used for home heating has been renewed through 2016 after expiring at the end of 2011. The value of the tax credit is $0.01/gallon for each percent of biodiesel blended with conventional home heating oil, with a maximum incentive of $0.20/gallon.

NORTH CAROLINA – NC GreenPower Small PV Incentives Shrink
NC GreenPower’s board recently voted to reduce the price paid to PV owners for SRECs. The rate for systems up to 5 kW will decrease from $0.10/kWh to $0.08/kWh on September 10. Larger systems must still apply through the program’s bid process.

RHODE ISLAND – FIT Application Window Shuttered
Rhode Island’s feed-in tariff for renewables closed August 3, as scheduled. There are three separate enrollment periods per calendar year under this program; this was the second enrollment period in 2012.