Florida - Energy tax credit, solar rebates, grants, incentives
Florida Renewable and Solar Energy Incentives
Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit (Commercial)
In 2006, the state of Florida created a production tax credit for renewable energy to galvanize the production and development of renewable energy manufacturing.
- Qualifying systems: solar thermal electric, wind, PV, hydroelectric, biomass, geothermal electric, CHP/cogeneration, hydrogen, tidal energy, oceanic thermal, wave energy.
- Commercial entities receive $0.01/kWh for generated electricity until June 30, 2010. The state has a budget of $5 million for each fiscal year.
- Credit that is not used may be transferred over to the subsequent year for up to 5 years.
Pilot Solar Programs – Orlando Utilities Commission (Residential/Commercial)
The OUC has established a program that offers to buy renewable energy credits from utility subscribers who install solar panel (PV) or solar thermal water heating systems that generate electricity.
- Solar thermal systems receive $0.03/kWh and PV systems receive $0.05/kWh. Payment is represented in the form of credit on the customer’s monthly electric bill.
- Net excess generation that is produced by a system is bought by the utility company, and then credited to the system owner at the energy distribution company’s standard retail rate.
- Only for first 600 kW of generation will be considered for residential PV systems. For residential solar water heating systems, the first 1,200 kW will be considered. Commercial systems are credited for up to 2 MW of generation.
Solar Feed-In Tariff – Gainesville Regional Utilities (Residential/Commercial)
GRU offers to purchase generated electricity from residential and commercial entities that install certified PV systems on their property.
- Commercial owners have the option of signing a FIT contract or net meter. Residential owners with systems that are less than 10 kW in size may sign a FIT contract, which constitutes either selling 100% of generated electricity or net metering (selling excess generation).
- The starting rate for building/pavement-mounted systems under 25 kW in size is $0.32/kWh. Freestanding systems smaller than 25 kW receive $0.26/kWh.
- A contract will be signed that stipulates a 20-year payment plan. Tariff rates decrease over time by a factor of a cent or two per year.
Sales Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy Equipment (Residential/Commercial)
The Florida Department of Revenue offers complete sales and use tax exemption to residential and commercial entities that utilize fuel cells, ethanol-derived energy systems and biodiesel.
- This refund is only granted to those who have already purchased qualified technologies.
Sales Tax Exemption for Solar Energy Equipment (Residential/Commercial)
The Florida Department of Revenue offers complete sales and use tax exemption to residential and commercial entities that utilize solar energy systems.
- Qualified systems: solar water heat, solar space heat, PV, solar pool heating.
Solar Energy System Incentives Program (Residential/Commercial)
Until June 30, 2010, Florida offers financial incentives for those who buy and install solar energy technologies on their property.
- Residential PV: $4.00/W-DC with a maximum incentive of $20,000/
- Residential Solar Water Heat: $500/installation.
- Commercial PV: $4.00/W-DC with a maximum incentive of $100,000.
- Commercial Solar Water Heat: $15.00/1,000 BTU per day with a maximum incentive of $5,000.
- Solar Thermal Pools: $100/installation.
Solar panel installations (PV) must be no smaller than 2 kW in size to be eligible. Solar water heaters must account for at least half of a building’s water heating.
- Systems must be installed by licensed contractors.
Utility-Sponsored Loan and Rebate Programs (Residential/Commercial)
- There are numerous utility-administered loan and rebate programs that are offered to residential owners and commercial business owners. The majority of these programs are reserved for energy efficient appliances and solar-electric systems.
Federal Tax Credit (Residential/Commercial)
Taxpayers are granted a personal tax credit of 30% of the total expenses, which include installation of residential solar panels (solar electric systems), solar thermal systems, fuel cells and labor expenses. Residential wind energy installations and geothermal pumps are also eligible for this tax credit.
- Solar electric systems and solar thermal heaters have no limit to the incentive.
- If there is excess federal tax credit, it may be carried over to the subsequent taxable year.
- This may continue on through consecutive years until 2016, under which unused credit may or may not be expunged.
Federal Energy Conservation Subsidy Exclusion (Residential)
Public utilities provide residential purchasers with an exemption of 100% of energy conservation subsidies.
- The overall worth of an installation or renewable utility regardless of the energy conservation capacity, will be excluded from the buyer’s gross income.
- Customers who participate in a utility company’s energy conservation program may be given a reduced rate of electricity utilized or a nonrefundable credit of the price of electricity on the customer’s monthly electric bill.
Energy-Efficient Mortgages (Residential)
With this federal loan program, homeowners may utilize energy-efficient mortgages (EEM) to either supplement or completely fund renewable energy systems.
Example: 4KW System – Residential Installation Cost
Average Electric Bill: $250/mo
Projected Annual Bill Escalation: 5%
Cost Per Watt: $6.50
- Estimated System Cost: $26,000
- Federal/State Tax Credit: $3,000
- State/Utility Rebate: $16,000
- Net Cost: $7,000
- Cumulative Lifetime Savings (25 Years): $44,162
- Investment Return: 22.9%
Savings of 73% on the total cost of your solar system through incentives