Ever wonder why there is such a big difference in solar panel installations between two of the sunniest states in the U.S. – California and Florida? Property owners in California account for over 50% of the country’s solar power, while Floridians generate only 1%. Meanwhile, the State of New Jersey is the second highest in the nation when it comes to solar energy.
The reason is that solar incentives, not sunshine, encourage people to go solar. Incentives in the form of tax rebates, property assessed clean energy loans (financing solar panels through property tax programs), and more result in greater numbers of solar panel installations. Add to these programs an overall “climate” – if you will – in favor of clean energy and environmentalism that is embraced by state lawmakers, and solar can thrive in just about any location.
Solar incentives in California tell a great deal of the story:
- Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger initiated a $3.3 billion dollar Million Solar Roofs program, with the goal of producing 3,000 new megawatts of solar power by 2017.
- The California Energy Commission’s New Solar Homes Partnership encourages construction of new homes with residential solar through a 10-year, $400 million dollar program.
- The California Public Utilities Commission’s California Solar Initiative provides additional incentives for solar panel installations.
For homeowners looking for solar incentives, check where your state rates on the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency. Contact a solar contractor to help you pencil out your potential savings through solar panels, and don’t forget to factor in the boost in property value you’ll enjoy as a result.