The Solar Opportunity for NY Businesses Gets Even Better


New York’s Public Service Commission (PSC) voted today to dramatically improve a key element of the NY-Sun Initiative, and as a result, more businesses in NY are now able to “go solar” on highly advantageous terms.

NY businesses interested in owning a state-of-the-art solar system (and capturing all of the available tax incentives and associated electricity savings) are eligible for a generous upfront rebate under a new & improved NYSERDA “Standard Offer” solar program. Alternatively, businesses can opt for a number of “no-capital” alternatives where they can simply purchase green electricity at a discount to their prevailing electricity rates (i.e. save money each month with no corresponding capital investment).The new incentive is actually a greatly improved version of NYSERDA’s existing PON 2112 “Standard Offer” incentive which provides solar system owners with a significant upfront rebate. Under the new program, the eligible system size is being increased from 50kW up to 200kW, with potential upfront rebates in excess of $200,000 per project.A “typical” 200kW (dc) solar project in NY would comprise about 800 individual solar modules and would be capable of producing over 220,000 kWh per annum, usually at a long-term equivalent cost that is significantly below the retail cost of electricity paid by most businesses in the state. For ground-mounted solar projects, a 200kW system would require about ¾ of an acre of usable land without significant shading. For roof-mounted solar projects, a 200kW system would typically require about 25,000 square feet of useable roof area.Having said that, every solar project is unique in many ways, and there is tremendous variability across individual project sites as well as particular system equipment specifications, all of which can have a big impact on expected solar production, total system cost and overall project economics. Businesses that are interested in learning about their solar options should partner with an experienced solar provider to fully vet the range of alternatives (i.e. purchase vs. lease vs. power purchase agreement options).