DEMEC Member Utilities - Green Energy Program Incentives

Program DEMEC Member Utilities - Green Energy Program Incentives
Category Financial Incentive
Implementing sector Utility
Last Update
State Delaware
Administrator Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control
Website http://www.dnrec.delaware.gov/energy/services/GreenEnergy/Pages/DEMEC.aspx
Start Date
Technologies Solar Water Heat, Solar Space Heat, Solar Photovoltaics
Sectors Residential

NOTE: The municipal electric utilities serving New Castle, Clayton, Lewes, Middletown, Smyrna, and Seaford do not offer any rebates for individual renewable energy systems. Incentives are only available for residents of Dover, Milford, and Newark. Please see the program web site for further information on the use of green energy funds in these jurisdictions. 

Delaware's municipal utilities provide incentives for solar photovoltaic (PV), solar thermal, wind, geothermal, and fuel cell systems installed by their electric customers. Eligibility is limited to systems that are intended to supply on-site energy needs. Incentives are available to both residential and non-residential member-owners, generally up to $15,000 for residential systems and $30,000 for non-residential systems. Both grid-connected and off-grid PV and wind energy systems are eligible for incentives, but systems must serve loads that would otherwise be served by the electric utility. Solar thermal systems used for domestic water heating or in radiant heating applications must reduce or eliminate the need for electric or gas heated water.

Incentives available in City of Newark and City of Milford are as follows: 

  • Solar Water Heating: 50% of installed costs, up to $3,000 for residential systems that pre-heat water for hot water systems, $5,000 for residential systems used in radiant heating applications, and $10,000 for all non-residential systems 
  • Solar PV: 33.3% of installed costs, up to $7,500 for residential systems and $15,000 for non-residential systems (only offered in city of Newark)
  • Small Wind: 33.3% of installed costs, up to $15,000 for residential systems and $30,000 for non-residential systems (only for Milford, incentive for Newark is half the amount)
  • Fuel Cells: 50% of installed costs, up to $15,000 for residential systems and $30,000 for non-residential systems (only for Milford, incentive for Newark is half the amount)
  • Geothermal Heat Pumps: $500 or $600 per ton (based on efficiency), up to $2,500 or $3,000 for residential systems (based on efficiency) and $20,000 for non-residential systems 

Incentives offered by City of Dover are as follows:

  • Solar Water Heating: $1/OG300 kWh saved up to $2,500 for residential, and $7,500 for non-rsidential, and non-profits. 
  • Small Wind: Tiered incentive $1.25/W (up to 5kW), $0.75 (up to 10kW), $0.35 (up to 50kW) maximum of $2,500 
  • Fuel Cells: 20% of installed costs, up to $7,500 for residential systems and $10,000 for non-residential systems 
  • Geothermal Heat Pumps: $700 or $800 per ton (based on size), up to $3,000 for residential systems  and $10,000 for non-residential systems 

Systems are subject to a variety of equipment, installation and warranty requirements, including limitations on system orientation and shading for solar energy systems. The Delaware Energy Office processes applications and conducts technical reviews for this program. The program rules do not specify the ownership of renewable energy credits (RECs) associated with system energy production; however, net metering customers in Delaware retain ownership of RECs unless they voluntarily relinquish such ownership. More information about the program is available in the program manual.


Background
Under the 2005 Delaware renewable portfolio standard (RPS) legislation, municipal utilities were allowed to opt out of the RPS schedule if they met certain other requirements. One such requirement was that they contribute to the existing Green Energy Fund for investor-owned utilities or create their own green energy fund supported by an equal surcharge (i.e. $0.000178/kWh). All of Delaware's municipal utilities opted out of the RPS requirements and established their own green energy funds.

In 2010 the Delaware RPS was amended by SS 1 for S.B. 119 and the section (26 Del. C. § 363) detailing the obligations of electric cooperatives was slightly revised. While these amendments change several other opt-out requirements, the provision mandating green energy fund contributions in the event of an opt-out remains unchanged.

 

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