Changes worth talking about are happening in the beautiful state of . The Oregon Senate passed an important bill, , at the end of June, and it is about to make its way to the Governor. HB 2618 is a , and it passed with flying colors – the vote was 27-2-1.  

A Coaster

Passing the solar bill was not easy. It could be described as a “solar coaster” and solar advocates believe there is still work to be done. However, there is satisfaction in the fact that the program has been established which will allow for the request of additional funding in the future.  

Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association is going to make sure members stay up to date as the regulatory process starts rolling and additional details are confirmed. 

What exactly is this solar bill? Here is what you are going to want to know about HB 2618 

Starting in January of 2020, solar rebates are going to begin being issued following six months of regulation. Over a two year period, there will be roughly $1.5 million allocated for rebates. Here is an interesting point, too – a quarter of the program is going to be used for projects benefiting low-income service providers and taxpayers. In terms of low-income providers, the solar rebate is going to be limited to commercial or residential projects. A solar rebate of up to 60 percent of the project, or up to $5,000 (whichever amount is less) can be accessed for residential low-income projects. In terms of other residential projects, a solar rebate of up to 40 percent of the project or up to $5,000 can be accessed.  

Solar and Storage: Worth Combining?  

Let’s say solar and storage were to be paired together. In this regard, a solar rebate of up to 60 percent of the storage system cost, or up to $2500 could be accessed by a low-income storage project. When it comes to other residential projects, if storage were to be paired with solar, the system would qualify for up to 40 percent of the storage system cost or up to $2500, again, whichever amount comes to less. There would be eligibility for up to $30,000 or half of the cost of the system regarding commercial projects for low-income service providers (once again, whichever amounts to less). Now let’s say the project were to be coupled with storage. In this case, the project would qualify for as much as 60 percent of the storage system cost or upwards of $15,000, whichever number turns out to be lower.   

Note: It is important to consider that when it comes to the net cost of a project, federal tax credits are not accounted for. On the other hand, certain incentives such as local and Trust are subtracted from the “net cost” or the cost of the system.  

In order to make sure funds are used properly, there are various consumer protection provisions in the solar bill. The solar bill can be viewed online by clicking here 

Solar in Oregon: Other Changes You Should Know About  

Changes are happening across the globe, and Oregon is no exception. There are big moves being made toward battery storage and solar. Portland General Electric, for instance, is one of the players involved, as it intends to bring a 50megawatt solar power array and battery storage system that will be able to put out 30 megawatts for a period of up to four hours. This is being done in a deal with NextEra Energy Resources.  

Furthermore, in Milwaukie, Oregon, the largest multifamily  (for the state of OR) was recently installed and revealed. The 400kilowatt solar project is set up across 13 apartment buildings. The amount of renewable electricity expected to be generated should be able to power just under 40 homes.  

These are things worth talking about. Clearly, the solar bill is just one of the solar changes happening in the state of Oregon. Stay in the know by following solar news – it is always interesting to read about what is happening and to consider changes all of us could be making in order to clean up our planet!

Sources: 

https://www.oseia.org/latest-news/solarrebatepasses 

https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Downloads/MeasureDocument/HB2618/Enrolled 

https://www.bizjournals.com/portland/news/2019/07/10/solar-batteries-edge-into-big-winds-territory.html 

https://www.opb.org/news/article/solar-panels-milwaukie-apartment-waverly-greens/ 

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