NOTE: In May 2018, S.B. 9 signed into law made significant changes to the state's Renewable Portfolio Standard and Net Metering policies. The law ends net metering to new customers when the Residential Solar Investment Program ends or when the regulators establish the new compensation program- whichever occurs first. The existing net metering customers will be grandfathered until December 2039. Upon the closure of the existing net metering program, new customers will be able to select buy-all, sell-all option or net billing option. PURA has initiated proceeding to develop regulations of the program.
In March 2012, the Connecticut Green Bank* unveiled the Residential Solar Investment Program (RSIP) with a goal to support 30 megawatts of residential solar photovoltaics (PV) by 2022 through Public Act 11-80. The original goal was met in June 2014. In June 2015, Public Act 15-194 expanded the Program to support up to 300 MW of new residential solar PV by 2022. The 300 MW is an effective cap of the total solar PV that the program can support. The program is set to expire on 2022, or when new solar PV installations reach total capacity of 300MW.
This residential program is limited to 1-4 family owner-occupied primary residences. Only customers of Eversource (formerly Connecticut Light & Power) and United Illuminating are eligible. There are two incentive types available, depending on the ownership of the PV system.
Expected Performance-Based Buydown (EPBB): Expected Performance Based Buy-Down incentives (EPBB or Rebate) are only available to Homeowners choosing to purchase a PV system from an Eligible Contractor. The Eligible Contractor must present the EPBB as an upfront cost reduction to the customer. The Green Bank will issue the EPBB payment directly to the Eligible Contractor on behalf of the homeowner at completion of the installation and upon Green Bank verification of submitted completion documents.
Performance Based Incentive: Performance Based Incentives (PBI) are only available to System Owners under a third-party financing structure (i.e. lease or power purchase agreement (PPA)). Under the PBI, homeowners will contract with Eligible Contractors and/or Third Party System Owners to provide a solar PV system. The PBI is paid to the System Owner over twenty-four (24) calendar quarters following a passing Green Bank inspection and is based on actual production at a per-kilowatt-hour rate specified at the time of RSIP project/incentive approval. System Owners are expected to build the expected total PBI into the lease or PPA rate to the customer.
EPBB and PBI payments cannot be combined for a single project under the RSIP and no Homeowner purchasing a PV system will be allowed to claim a PBI or receive a PBI. Likewise, no System Owner offering third-party financing will be allowed to claim or receive an EPBB for the same project.
Customers are required to have a home energy audit and must work with a contractor from the Green Bank's Eligible Contractor list. The contractor is responsible for completing all the paperwork and application materials, which are all completed online.
Solar Home Residential Energy Credits (SHRECs)
Funding for the expansion of the Program to include 300 MW of solar PV is derived through the sale of Solar Home Renewable Energy Credits (SHRECs). SHRECs represent the environmental attributes of one megawatt hour of electricity generated through residential solar PV systems that are installed through the RSIP on or after January 1st, 2015.
SHRECs created by the residential solar system that participate in the RSIP will automatically be transferred to the Green Bank. SHRECs will have a term life of two years, including its year of production and the following year. The Green Bank will sell SHRECs to the electric distribution companies (EDCs) through master purchase agreements as 15-year annual tranches. United Illuminating will be required to purchase 20% of the annual aggregate credits, and 80% of of the credits must be purchased by Eversource. The price of the SHRECs will be determined by the Green Bank, which shall not exceed the price of small ZRECs, or will be set five dollars less than the State’s Alternative Compliance Payment (ACP). The EDCs may retire the SHRECs for their compliance with the Class I portion of their Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requirement, or resell the credits. All the proceeds from the resale of SHRECs will be credited to the EDCs customers.
*previously known as the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (CEFIA)