Gorham, New Hampshire - Solar Hot Water
A recently installed solar hot water system in Gorham, New Hampshire

Now’s the time to get in your reservation if you want to benefit from New Hampshire’s generous residential solar hot water rebate (averaging $2,600 for most homes).

We’ve received word that the reservation window has been reduced from 12 months to 3 months (that is, the window you have between submitting a pre-approval and having your installation completed), per request from the DOE.

The state is encouraging homeowners to complete all of their solar hot water installations by this October. Due to the popularity of the program we encourage you to contact us today if you want to get a system installed this season. The commercial rebate program still looks good.

The good news is that financially the program still has plenty of funds, though we are told most of the DOE money (which funds the $2,000 portion of the rebate) has already been committed. In general, the solar rebates made possible by ARRA funds are running out, so rebates may likely never be as good as they are today. With oil prices high, and set to go higher, the time is really right for solar!

Click here to see the whole update from New Hampshire PUC.

What About RGGI?

In February/March of this year New Hampshire shocked much of the Northeast by presenting a bill that would pull the Granite State out of RGGI, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. We called upon lawmakers to think about the long-term implications of such a move and stand up to support RGGI.

This past week, the NH Senate voted to revise rather than repeal RGGI. Businessweek reports:

The Senate voted 16-8 Wednesday to approve an amendment proposed by Senate Republican Leader Jeb Bradley to a House bill. The amendment retains the state’s participation in the program but limits how the money is spent by dedicating it to well-established energy efficiency programs run by the utility companies.

The amendment replaces a bill passed by the House in March that would end the state’s participation in RGGI, but the Senate lacks the votes to override a gubernatorial veto of that legislation. Bradley’s proposal is meant as a compromise.

Gov. John Lynch has not said he would veto the House bill, but he opposes efforts to end New Hampshire’s participation in the greenhouse gas initiative.

“You can’t always get what you want,” Bradley said, “but what we need today is good government. … We have got to fund programs that work.”

Bradley estimates New Hampshire’s program costs the average ratepayer 35 cents per month. His proposal would drop the monthly cost to 17 cents.

Full story here: http://buswk.co/iNiwPp

The Latest from Maine

Legislation that will continue Maine’s solar rebates for the foreseeable future is expected to pass, however the program still has not been given an alternative funding mechanism yet. While the tract looks promising, we still urge you to contact your state legislators if you have not already and ask them to support solar rebates. For those who have advocated on behalf of solar rebates so far… thank you!

We understand around $500,000 remains in the program, which should sustain the ME state solar rebates for at least the next 6 months. We’re hoping to see an effective funding alternative make it into place for a more sustainable continuation of the program before the current funds are exhausted.