Pennsylvania homeowners that use West Penn Power are encouraged to lower their energy usage through a number of incentives offered by the company. If the customer is able to reduce energy consumption by 20%, West Penn offers a $200 minimum rebate. For reducing energy consumption by 49%, West Penn customers are eligible for a $1,000 rebate.
The DCED is an incentive program that offers grants and loans that go towards building/renovating “green” buildings. A building is deemed “green” if it is built in the interest of reducing and conserving energy through use of renewable energy systems. In order to be eligible for this program, buildings must receive a LEED Gold certificate. The maximum loan offer available is $100,000. For a loan, customers have a 4% interest rate and a ten-year payback plan. For grants, a Pennsylvania taxpayer can receive up to 10% the amount of their project with a limit of $500,000.
Net metering is the concept of tying your renewable energy production into the existing electrical grid (through your existing power lines to your home or business). This allows your electric meter to spin backward (and receive energy credit) when you produce more power than you use.
Pennsylvania taxpayers are allowed to use net metering if they are using the following systems: solar, biomass, wind, hydropower or geothermal. Each month, the energy produced by the system will be used to offset the kWh consumption. The customer will see this credit on their monthly invoice. In order to be eligible for net metering, customers must have a system that generates 50 kWh or less.
Pennsylvania residents and businesses are eligible to receive a tax credit of 30% payments made for the installation or labor costs of the following qualified residential and commercial solar-electric technologies: solar PV, solar water heaters, small wind-energy, fuel cells, heat pumps and geothermal systems. For systems installed after 2008 there is no limit to the energy incentive credit. Any amount of federal tax credit may rollover to the next tax year as long as it exceeds tax liability. This rollover can continue until 2016, but there is no credit plan after that date.
Pennsylvania taxpayers are exempt from paying 10% of energy conservation subsidies that have been supplied by public utilities. The purchase of installing the following systems will not be applied to a customer’s gross income: solar PV, solar water heaters, or solar space heaters.
Through this loan program, Pennsylvania taxpayers are able to use EEM (energy-efficient mortgages) towards the payments of residential renewable energy systems.