Californians See Significant Increase in Solar Water Heating Rebates
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved an increase in rebates offered through the California Solar Initiative (CSI)-Thermal Program of up to 45%. The CPUC authorized the higher rebates to help boost early adoption of solar water heating technology and encourage involvement in the statewide program.
The increased incentive structure applies to the early steps of the CSI-Thermal Program, with cash rebates rising 45% for qualifying systems installed on single-family homes and by 13.33% for those installed on commercial or multifamily buildings. The maximum rebate has increased to $2,719 for single-family homes and remains at $500,000 for multifamily or commercial buildings.
Through the program administrators – California Center for Sustainable Energy (CCSE) in the San Diego Gas & Electric Company territory; Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E); Southern California Edison (SCE); and Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) – customers who heat their water with electricity, natural gas or propane can be eligible for the program’s highest solar water heating rebate yet.
The rebate increases apply to all CSI-Thermal Program applications submitted after July 3, 2012. Requirements must be met to qualify for a rebate under the program, and factors such as how much energy the system can displace will affect the amount of rebate that can be received.
In addition to CSI-Thermal rebates, customers may be able to take advantage of the 30% Federal Investment Tax Credit on the net cost of a system less the CSI rebate. (Customers should consult the IRS or a tax professional for details.)
Typical solar water heating systems reduce the amount of energy needed to heat water by working as a companion system with a current water heater. The system captures the warmth of the sun and transfers the heat to the water. The solar-heated water is held in a storage tank until it’s needed to replace the hot water pulled from the conventional water heater for use in sinks, showers, baths, dishwashers, and washing machines.
For more information about the benefits of solar water heating and the rebates available for qualifying systems through the CSI-Thermal Program, click here.
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