Renewable Energy Technology Incentives in New Hampshire
The state of New Hampshire has a number of renewable energy technology incentives in place and legislators have set a challenging Renewable Portfolio Standard of 24.8% by 2025. Most residents and businesses in the state are in favor of cleaner energy and the introduction of net metering and there are a number of rebates available for solar, wind and hydroelectric. By the end of 2014, New Hampshire was getting 17% of its electricity from renewable sources.
Currently, solar power provides only a small amount of the energy mix for New Hampshire though there is the potential to get much more. The solar power industry is relatively small employing just over 700 people and the combined capacity of 24 MW puts it way down the table compared to other states. The state has no major wind farm installations, the largest being in Peterborough that has a capacity of just under 1 MW.
There is great potential for biomass in the state and there are some large plants including one in Whitefield that generates 16 MW. With plenty of natural resources, it’s no surprise that biomass provides a large portion of the state’s renewable energy mix. New Hampshire has one major hydroelectric plant, the Frank D Comerford Dam, but there are plans to develop the future potential of the state including a proposed installation at Nashua. Capacity for wind power has increased reasonably quickly in the last ten years and the state currently has a capacity of 420 MW.
Solar PV Incentives in New Hampshire
With a stiff RPS to reach by 2025, New Hampshire is looking at solar PV more seriously and the industry is beginning to expand. Installations benefit from the 30% Federal Tax Credit and there is net metering available. There is also PACE financing for a number of renewable technologies including solar. There are Commercial & Industrial Renewable Energy Grants available from a fund of around $2-3 million with a minimum award of $150,000 for qualifying organizations. For a range of renewables, businesses and homes can take advantage of the Property Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy.
Solar PV Case Study in New Hampshire
Solar PV in New Hampshire gives a reasonably good return on investment and there is the option to buy outright or take advantage of a leasing arrangement whereby you get free installation but hand over any incentives to the installing company. The average cost of a 5 kW array is fairly low compared to other states, at around $16,250. With the Federal Tax Rebate and lower electricity bills you should expect to pay off any loan within the first ten years. You should also be looking at a net profit in excess of $30,000 for the 25-year average lifespan of the array.
Solar Thermal Incentives in New Hampshire
Solar thermal is gaining popularity as a way of heating hot water for homes and businesses and comes with many of the incentives that solar PV enjoys. Homes will benefit specifically from Residential Solar Water Heating Rebates which can provide up to $1,900 as long as the current round of funding lasts. Installations need to meet certain criteria such as being SRCC certified.
Small Hydro Incentives in New Hampshire
Small hydroelectric generation is more popular in New Hampshire than in many other states because of businesses such as the Granite State Hydropower Association who help promote the industry. Incentives come mainly from the Federal Tax Rebate but there are grant and loan schemes available including Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) Grants.
Geothermal Incentives in New Hampshire
Geothermal including ground source heat pumps are supported by some of the utility companies and is becoming a more popular way of heating homes in recent times. Much depends on property construction and how well insulated they are as heat pumps tend to provide low level but constant heat if you are looking for a good return on investment.
Biomass Incentives in New Hampshire
Biomass is increasing in New Hampshire and it has plenty of local resources to take advantage of. The Grafton County Complex went online in 2013 and produces 8.2 million BTUs. Home wood chip burners are also more popular and seen as a low cost green option for many households and businesses on a smaller scale. Wood burning stoves do not receive the property tax exemption larger installations do.
Wind Power Incentives in New Hampshire
Like many northern states, New Hampshire has a good potential for producing energy from turbines. There is an issue about what local residents feel about this technology, especially in their own back yards, which may well have stalled development in recent years. For wind power there are incentives available such as the Federal Tax Rebate but also the Property Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy. Despite the cost of initial installation for remote areas it provides electricity with a decent return on investment.
New Hampshire’s renewable portfolio is more progressed than a number of other states but there is still some way to go if they are to harness all their natural resources. You can find out more about renewable technology incentives in New Hampshire from the DSIRE web portal.