New York Launches Revamped Solar Incentive Program


New York's multiple solar programs are transitioning to the single, statewide NY-Sun Incentive Program.

The NY-Sun Incentive Program increases the size of non-residential systems eligible for incentives from 100 kW to 200 kW and also provides incentives for non-residential systems that are installed through power purchase agreements and leases, a strategy intended to stimulate market investment.

The program provides financial support for solar projects and uses a MW block system approach for regional solar development. The program divides the state into three regions – Con Edison territory, Long Island and Upstate. Each region is assigned separate MW blocks and incentive levels for residential solar projects up to 25 kW and small non-residential solar projects up to 200 kW.

When the MW target for the first block in each sector – residential or small non-residential – within a region is reached, that block is closed and a new block for the sector is started with a new MW target and a lower incentive level. Once all of the blocks for a particular region and sector are filled, an incentive for that region and sector will no longer be offered.

The arrangement is intended to phase out incentives in regions where market conditions can support it. The program expects to add more than 3 GW of installed solar capacity in the state by 2023.

MW blocks and incentives for large commercial systems over 200 kW will be available in 2015.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) says it will work closely with PSEG Long Island, which will locally administer the program. While growth of solar in the residential sector has been very successful on Long Island, small non-residential solar growth has been slower.

‘Merging these programs into the NY-Sun Incentive Program will stimulate development of solar projects across this state and sends a clear message that New York is a leader in solar energy innovation,’ says Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, in a statement. ‘This approach will help the industry plan for the future, spur new development and aid in New York's transition to a cleaner, cheaper and more efficient energy grid.’

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