Oregon is one state that shines in relation to its ability to promote solar power, mostly due to the high-quality renewable energy packages that have been created over the last 10-years. The list of incentives in the state of Oregon includes solar rebates, incentives, net-metering and tax credits, which are all covered here -
The average payback time for a standard-sized PV system (5kW) is about 10 years.
Oregon energy rates are a relatively low $0.12/kWh. If you installed a 5kW system you would save approx. $743 per year on your electricity bill ($62/month).
The state of Oregon offers a great rebate through the Oregon Energy Trust. Rebates for either PacifiCorp’s or PGE customers are set at $1,000 per kW. The maximum incentive per household is $5,000. Although you should take advantage of the Energy Trust Rebates, a downside to this incentive is that the Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) are owned by the utilities. RECs are the credits a homeowner can normally sell on to utility companies, but unfortunately not in this state. More on SRECs.
A maximum tax credit of $6,000 is available in the state of Oregon, although this isn’t paid in a single lump sum. The tax credit is given in four equal sums of $1,500 per year, which runs for the first four years of the solar installation.
Oregon is one state that doesn’t have a sales tax, so there is no discount here. But the installation of a solar system is property tax exempt. You will also be adding a sizable sum to the property’s value – which is roughly estimated to be 20x the annual savings in utility costs.
The Oregon renewable portfolio standards (RPS) is among the best in regards to getting its fair share of energy from renewable source, Oregon’s ambitious goals stand at 15% by the year 2015, 20% by the year 2020 and 25% by the year 2025, and those figures to not account for hydro-power. Oregon is taking a gradual and sustainable approach to reaching its targets. And if hydro-power is accounted for than OR is using 100-percent renewable energy for a good percentage of the year.
Oregon is a state that provides 100% net-metering, meaning that for any excess power generated, you will receive a credit on the following bill. However, it isn’t possible to continue carrying excess credits across from month to month, which is possible in some states including Nevada and Connecticut.
The best place to go is through a national group discount program or your local solar installer. You can find both of them here.
[Photo Credit via Flickr under CC License]