Alaska Solar Rebates And Incentives

Rebates list

Alaska Rebates and Incentives Summary

AlaskaAlaska is THE state for solar activity… if you’re talking about the Aurora Borealis (or the northern lighters). The wild, dancing colors in the night sky are the result of the sun’s molten flyaways being absorbed into our atmosphere before it reached Earth.

So it’s a bit ironic that the state with seemingly the closest relationship to the sun doesn’t have more state incentives for investing in solar energy production.

It’s one of few states that haven’t passed a renewable energy standard, a mandate that a specific percentage of its power must come from renewable resources by a specific date. 

But with a closer look at Alaska, it’s easy to understand why the state has been slow to promote alternative energy use. It’s the biggest state in the country. Alaskans joke that you could cut their state in half and make Texas the third biggest. The vastness of the state and its sparse population make it difficult to get energy from one place to another. The truth is that there are many Alaskans who use renewable energy sources. But they do it because they have to in most cases.

Aside from infrastructure issues, there are issues with the climate and sunlight in Alaska. The sun activity varies dramatically between southern Alaska, where summer days are 12 hours long and winter days are fewer than six to northern Alaska where summer days are almost 22 hours and winter ones are just a couple hundred dusky minutes.

Still, many an Alaskan will offer testimony that they have installed solar and it works, even during those months of stubby winter days.

The primary reason Alaska hasn’t completely embraced renewable energy subsidies, incentives, and rebates is perhaps that it doesn’t need to.

Alaska is extremely rich in other natural resources. It’s one of the nation’s top coal and natural gas producers. And it is the country’s second largest oil producer. Alaska accounts for one fifth of the United States’ oil production. Prudhoe Bay, the country’s largest oil well, is responsible for 8 percent of the nation’s petroleum.

In 2001 the Alaska legislature voted not to consider new energy sources because members said it wouldn’t be cost effective.

Today, however, there are some government programs, like a state grant program, a performance-based incentive, and a low-interest rate loan program, as well as a number of programs sponsored by local utilities.

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Search Federal Programs, Rebates or Incentives

Alternative Energy Conservation Loan Fund

The Division of Economic Development in the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development is providing loans to purchase, construct and install alternative energy systems or energy conservation improvements in commercial buildings. The program defines an alternative energy system as a source of thermal, mechanical, or electrical energy that is not dependent on oil, gas, or nuclear fuel for the supply of energy for space heating and cooling, refrigeration and cold storage, electrical power, mechanical power, or heating of water. Applicants must be Alaska residents for the 12 months prior to the date of application to be eligible. If the

Building Energy Code

Much of the information presented in this summary is drawn from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Building Energy Codes Program and the Building Codes Assistance Project (BCAP). For more detailed information about building energy codes, visit the DOE and BCAP websites.

All new residential, commercial, and community-owned buildings constructed on or after January 1, 1992 that receive financing from the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) must comply with the Alaska Building Energy Efficiency Standard (BEES). BEES is based upon the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), AHRAE 62.2 2010, and Alaska-specific amendments to those standards. A building must have a 

Chugach Electric Association, Inc. - Net Metering

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska's net metering commission, taking effect in 2010, allows customers to install and use specific types of renewable generation to offset monthly energy usage and sell excel power to their electric utilities. Chugach offers this service, providing several online resources such as service conditions, buyback rates, etc.

Energy Efficiency Interest Rate Reduction Program

The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) offers interest rate reductions to home buyers purchasing new and existing homes with 6 Star and 5 Star Plus energy ratings, or making energy improvements to existing homes. All homes constructed after 1992 must meet the AFHC Building Energy Efficiency Standard (BEES). New construction must exceed the minimum BEES requirements. Any property that can be energy rated and is otherwise eligible for AHFC financing may qualify for this program.

For new and existing home purchases that are rated 6 Star or 5 Star Plus, applicants are eligible for an interest rate reduction for the

Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) - SNAP Renewable Energy and Net Metering Program

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska's net metering commission, taking effect in 2010, allows customers to install and use specific types of renewable generation to offset monthly energy usage and sell excel power to their electric utilities. The Golden Valley Electric Association offers this service, providing several online resources such as service conditions, annual reports, buyback rates, etc.

Golden Valley Electric Association - Sustainable Natural Alternative Power (SNAP) Program

Golden Valley Electric Association's (GVEA) SNAP program encourages members to install renewable energy generators and connect them to the utility's electrical distribution system by offering an incentive payment based on the system's production on a dollar per kilowatt-hour ($/kWh) basis. The amount paid to participating renewable energy producers depends on the total amount contributed by GVEA supporters.

“Qualified alternative energy resources" includes electricity produced from generation facilities that are fueled by: (a) wind; or (b) solar energy and other renewable energy resources. GVEA limits these resources to 25 kilowatts of capacity or less per system.

There are two different SNAP

Home Energy Rebate Program

Note: The Home Energy Rebate Program is suspended effective 5 pm March 25, 2016. Applicants on the waitlist may check the status of their application online, and new participants may call 1-877-257-3228 up until the close of business on March 25 to enroll.

Under the Home Energy Rebate Program, homeowners who want to make their own energy efficiency improvements on their home can receive a rebate for some of their expenditures. The program requires a home energy rater to evaluate homes before and after the improvements. Rebates are dependent on the relative amount of efficiency gained and the actual cost

Homer Electric Association - Net Metering Program

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska's net metering commission, taking effect in 2010, allows customers to install and use specific types of renewable generation to offset monthly energy usage and sell excel power to their electric utilities. Homer Electric Association offers this service, providing online resources on requirements and the application process.

Interconnection Guidelines

In October 2009, the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) approved net metering regulations. These rules were finalized and approved by the lieutenant governor in January 2010 and became effective January 15, 2010.  In May 2011, the RCA approved interconnection guidelines.  All utilities subject to Alaska's net metering regulations were required to issue revised tariffs that address interconnection.

The interconnection guidelines state that the utility can require a customer to have liability insurance, if the insurance is easily available at a reasonable cost to the customer.  No external disconnect switch is required; the customer is either given the choice of installing an

Matanuska Electric Association - Net Metering

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska's net metering commission, taking effect in 2010, allows customers to install and use specific types of renewable generation to offset monthly energy usage and sell excel power to their electric utilities. Matanuska Electric Association offers this service, providing several online resources such as service conditions and applications, etc. Net metering, also referred to as co-generation, allows MEA members to generate a portion of their electricity from an approved site generating source. This can offset the member’s own personal energy usage and in some cases cover beyond the member’s personal usage. Any unused electricity generated by

Net Metering

In October 2009, the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) approved net metering regulations. These rules were finalized and approved by the lieutenant governor in January 2010 and became effective January 15, 2010. All electric utilities subject to economic regulation are required to offer net metering. Independent systems with retail sales of less than 5,000,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) are exempt from offering net metering. Utilities that generate 100% of electricity from certain approved renewable energy sources and other sources approved by the RCA that have a low environmental impact are also exempt.

With these regulations, renewable energy systems with a capacity up

New Home Rebate

The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AFHC) provides rebates to Alaskans who purchase or build new, energy-efficient homes. AFHC uses the Home Energy Rating System index to determine the size of the rebate. Homes that score between 92.0 and 94.0 points are given a 5 Star Plus rating and are eligible for a $7,000 rebate. Homes that score 95 points and above points are rated as a 6 Star and are eligible for a $10,000 rebate.

To be eligible, applicants must be the original homeowner, and the home must be their primary residence and less than one year old. The home

Power Project Loan Fund

Created by the Alaska State Legislature and administered by the Alaska Energy Authority, this fund provides loans to electric utilities, regional electric utilities, municipalities, regional and village corporations, village councils, and independent power producers. It is designed for the development or upgrade of small-scale power production facilities of less than 10 megawatts, conservation facilities, and bulk fuel storage facilities. This includes energy production, transmission and distribution, and waste energy conservation facilities that depend on fossil fuel, wind power, tidal, geothermal, biomass, hydroelectric, solar or other energy sources.

The loan term is related to the life of the project, but may

Renewable Energy Grant Program

The Legislature did not appropriate Renewable Energy Fund(REF) for any of the projects recommended in year 2016 and 2017, due to State’s fiscal challenges. Instead, the list of projects that was evaluated and recommended for Round IX funding in 2016 was again supplied to the legislature as recommendations for Round X in the 2017 legislative sessions. A slightly modified version of this list is now submitted for use in the 2018 legislative session.

In May 2008, Alaska enacted legislation authorizing the creation of the Alaska Renewable Energy Fund, a  grant fund administered by the Alaska Energy Authority (AEA). The

Second Mortgage Program for Energy Conservation

Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) offers loans of up to $30,000, with a repayment term of 15 years, to qualified borrowers through the Second Mortgage for Energy Conservation program. Borrowers apply to AHFC for financing to make energy improvements on owner-occupied properties. Applicants must select from the list of energy upgrades, which are provided by an AKWarm certified energy rater. All improvements must be completed within 365 days of loan closing. Improvements not listed or recommended by the rater may not be included in the loan. The interest rate is the Taxable Program or Rural Owner-Occupied 15-year interest rate,

Small Building Material Loan

The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) offers a Small Building Materials Loan for applicants to complete or renovate property located within a "small community."*

Applicants may borrow up to $100,000 for projects that improve the livability of a home, improve energy efficiency, or expand space. The loan can be applied toward building materials, freight or third party labor costs, and the project should be completed within 180 days of the loan closing. If the owner does not occupy the property, then only duplexes, tri-plexes, and four-plexes are eligible for the loan program. Buildings with more than four units must be financed

Solar Easements

Alaska's solar easement provisions are similar to those in many other states. They do not create an automatic right to sunlight. Rather, they allow parties to voluntarily enter into solar easement contracts for the purpose of ensuring adequate exposure of a solar energy system.

Weatherization Program

The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) administers the Weatherization Program through grants to local service providers. Alaska residents that meet income criteria are eligible to receive weatherization services from their local provider at no cost. The program is available to homeowners and renters. Homes that have been weatherized prior to 2008 may also apply. Interested residents should contact a weatherization provider to apply; the list of providers is available on the AHFC program website.  

Residences participating in the Home Energy Rebate or New Home Rebate Program may not also participate in the Weatherization Program.