Province offering solar rebates for homeowners, businesses and non-profits

by Morinville News Staff

The government has chosen the beginning of summer to launch Energy Efficiency Alberta’s $36-million Residential and Commercial Solar Program.

Homeowners can now receive up to 30 per cent off solar panel installation costs, to a maximum rebate of $10,000. Businesses and non-profit organizations are eligible for up to 25 per cent of system costs, to a maximum rebate of $500,000. Rebates are based on the size of the installation and calculated at $0.75 per watt.

An average Alberta household uses 7,200 kWh per year, which would be generated by a 5.5 kW system in Calgary or a 6.3 kW system in Edmonton. A 6.3 kW system in Edmonton would be eligible for a rebate of $4,700 on a solar PV system costing approximately $17,000-$19,000.

“This solar program helps Albertans lower their utility bills and invest in their homes,” said Shannon Phillips, Minister of Environment and Parks and Minister Responsible for the Climate Change Office, in a news release Wednesday. “Solar jobs are growing and the industry is putting Albertans back to work. Solar electricity puts the power in Albertans’ hands, making life more affordable while diversifying the economy and reducing carbon pollution.”

Monica Curtis, CEO, Energy Efficiency Alberta says solar uptake has doubled since 2015, and will only continue to grow as costs come down.

“This rebate program has been a missing piece in making the push toward solar and renewable generation in Alberta,” Curtis said.

Applicants to the two-year program must own or have long-term rights to their property. Additionally, solar systems must also be designed and installed by qualified installers using CSA-approved panels and components or applicable certification to Canadian standards.

Once a system is installed, inspected and connected, those who have installed systems will receive a direct deposit in 10 to 15 business days.

Albertans wanting to ensure their project is eligible can apply directly at Energy Efficiency Alberta for pre-approval. Systems installed prior to April 15, 2017 are not eligible for a rebate.

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