The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has launched the state's first incentive program for solar thermal systems. The program was created under Program Opportunity Notice 2149 in December 2010.
The five-year, $25 million initiative provides incentives of up to $4,000 per site for eligible single-family and multifamily residences and up to $25,000 per site for eligible commercial and nonprofit customers who currently use electricity to produce hot water.
In addition to the NYSERDA incentives, homeowners, commercial entities and nonprofit organizations can apply for federal tax incentives, which cover 30% of the cost of an installed solar thermal system, and New York state tax incentives, which cover 25% of the installed system, up to $5,000.
On average, incentives for a typical residential or commercial system are expected to cover approximately 15% to 20% of the installed cost of a solar thermal system, according to NYSERDA. The incentives are paid directly to the eligible installer and must be passed on, in full, to customers.
To qualify for incentives, equipment and systems must be certified by the Solar Rating and Certification Corp., and incentives will be available only on approved solar thermal systems installed by NYSERDA-approved solar thermal installers.