Archive for March, 2011

Get in on the First Step with Xcel!

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

If you’re an Xcel customer and thinking about Solar Energy, now is the time to act…before the incentives decline more substantially! Yesterday morning Xcel Energy re-opened the door for solar energy in Colorado. After more than a month of negotiations since the original program was shut down without notice, the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) ruled to accept a negotiated settlement last Friday afternoon, and yesterday morning the new program was officially kicked off. The incentives under the new program aren’t as aggressive as they were before, but the return on investment (ROI) calculations are similar, with break-even points for most residential Arise Energy clients at about 10-11 years. (Commercial clients see a much quicker ROI due to unique aspects of how commercial systems can be written off, and other incentives for which they may be able to qualify.)

The new Xcel program includes two incentive components: (a) an up-front cash rebate of $1.75/watt, and (b) a performance based incentive (PBI) of $0.04/kWh of production for the first ten years of system operation. The PBI is expected to show up as a credit on Xcel customer monthly bills. This change in residential incentive (and the incentives now available) are the first step toward reaching a point where the revised program will ultimately deliver all incentives over time — e.g. all will be performance based, with none being paid up-front.

This first “step” in the program will be funded by Xcel for a total of 3 megawatts (3MW), after which the program will “step” down to the next tranche of incentives, which will include a smaller ($1.00/Watt) up-front rebate and a larger PBI. With each following step in the program, the combination of rebate and PBI components will be changed, with an increasingly larger portion being paid out as performance based incentives and a smaller amount paid via up-front rebate. With each new “step” the total incentive payout is also expected to decline by about 10%. This is a steeper decline slope than we were on with the old program.

Xcel clients seeking to invest in renewable energy to lock in their energy rates for the next 30-40 years and reduce their carbon footprints will find that the sooner they act the better the cash flow looks. Further, once this initial step in the new program is complete and Xcel steps to the next tranche of incentive funding, the rebate component will drop by 43 percent!

Please feel free to call us if you have any questions about the new program, and to explore how we might be able to assist you in designing a renewable energy solution for your property.

Solar*Rewards Are Back!

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Yesterday morning Xcel Energy re-opened the door for solar energy in Colorado. After more than a month of negotiations since the original program was shut down without notice, the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) ruled to accept a negotiated settlement last Friday afternoon, and yesterday morning the new program was officially kicked off. The incentives under the new program aren’t as aggressive as they were before, but the return on investment (ROI) calculations are similar, with break-even points for most residential Arise Energy clients at about 10-11 years. (Commercial clients see a much quicker ROI due to unique aspects of how commercial systems can be written off, and other incentives for which they may be able to qualify.)

The new Xcel program includes two incentive components: (a) an up-front cash rebate of $1.75/watt, and (b) a performance based incentive (PBI) of $0.04/kWh of production for the first ten years of system operation.   The PBI is expected to show up as a credit on Xcel customer monthly bills.  This change in residential incentive (and the incentives now available) are the first step toward reaching a point where the revised program will ultimately deliver all incentives over time — e.g. all will be performance based, with none being paid up-front.  

This first “step” in the program will be funded by Xcel for a total of 3 megawatts (3MW), after which the program will “step” down to the next tranche of incentives, which will include  a smaller ($1.00/Watt) up-front rebate and a larger PBI.  With each following step in the program, the combination of rebate and PBI components will be changed, with an increasingly larger portion being paid out as performance based incentives and a smaller amount paid via up-front rebate. With each new “step” the total incentive payout is also expected to decline by about 10%. This is a steeper decline slope than we were on with the old program.

Clients seeking to invest in renewable energy to lock in their energy rates for the next 30-40 years and reduce their carbon footprints will find that the sooner they act the better the cash flow looks. Please feel free to call us if you have any questions about the new program, and how it would impact your investment in renewable energy.

As Japan’s Plight Unfolds, Solar Sector Sees Boost Amid Nuclear Concerns

Sunday, March 20th, 2011

By Jessica Lillian

The March 11 earthquake and subsequent tsunami that struck Japan and damaged multiple nuclear reactors – leading to a potential nuclear catastrophe – has re-emphasized the risks posed by nuclear energy. This skittishness is translating into stronger expectations for solar energy and other forms of renewable energy this year and over the long term.
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Disaster in Japan – Impact on Solar?

Saturday, March 19th, 2011

“Our hearts go out to the people of Japan at this difficult time following the catastrophe there…we pray that there will not be further loss of life, that their nuclear situation will become contained quickly, and that the Japanese people and their economy will recover very soon,” said Arise co-founder and CEO Jim Bartlett. “Meanwhile, our supply chain has been unaffected thus far by the events in Japan as our key suppliers are North American, German and Chinese.”

“Our most recent challenges have been with the regulatory side of things here in Colorado, primarily with Xcel Energy unexpectedly freezing their renewable energy incentive program a month ago,” said co-founder Tim Meisinger. “Fortunately a well-structured settlement agreement was reached between Xcel and industry interveners last week. Now that the Colorado PUC has approved the agreement, the new solar incentive program will kick off next Wednesday morning at 8:00AM.”

Arise clients with questions about making application for the new incentives, scheduling, or the timetable for their new photovoltaic solar solutions should contact Arise Energy Solutions for more information. Direct: 720-468-3225