DTE Energy is offering a chance for denizens in motor city and across the mitt’s thumb to go solar under their SolarCurrents incentive program. But they better hurry up, the company announced it was making the offering June 24 and it closes July 23.
Under the offering DTE Energy will offer incentives for up to 496 kilowatts of new solar projects, 373 kilowatts of which are for residential projects, while the rest—123 kilowatts—are for commercial projects. Under the incentive program DTE Energy is offering residents an up-front rebate of 20 cents per watt for PV modules and a production based incentive of 3 cents per kilowatt hour. For businesses and other entities that fall under that category, DTE Energy is offering a 13 cents per watt rebate and a 2 cents per kilowatt hour generated. The production-based incentive allows DTE to purchase the renewable energy credits generated by the systems. The agreements and payments under the SolarCurrents program are set to last until Aug. 31, 2029, according to DTE.
The systems under the SolarCurrents program are also net-metered. Under the state’s net metering law, credits for excess energy generated by a system under 20 kilowatts are credited toward the customer’s next bill and carry over into future months indefinitely. “At the end of the calendar year the customer will receive a check for any unused bill credits from the utility if the balance is more then $250,” according to the Database for State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE).
This is DTE’s second offering for residents and smaller businesses this year. “If the number of applications exceeds the available capacity, a random selection process will be Aug. 7 to determine which projects will be included in the program,” DTE said. Projects under the second round of funding must be completed by June 9, 2014, according to DTE.
In all, DTE plans to add in 2 megawatts of distributed rooftop generation between 2013 and 2014 through the SolarCurrents program. So far it’s proved a popular program. For the first offering in January, DTE had 90 applicants vying for 375 kilowatts worth of projects. Ultimately DTE provided incentives for 377 kilowatts of projects, according to company figures.
DTE has offered the SolarCurrents program since 2009 and, according to a report on the project’s progress which came out in late 2012, it’s already resulted in the installation of almost 5 MW of customer-cited and owned PV arrays. DTE has also installed its own generation projects under the SolarCurrents program, including the 485 kilowatt array on leased land from Wil-Le farms.