Under a law set to expire 2016, customers who install a new home solar system receive a 30% Federal Tax Credit. There is no upper limit on the credit (the more you invest in your system, the bigger the credit). Tax credits are also available for businesses.
Learn more on the Energy Star website.
California Solar Initiative (CSI) is the rebate program for existing homes wanting to install solar electric systems. The CA Public Utility Commission (PUC) oversees the CSI program.
Go Solar California is a campaign of the California Energy Commission and the Public Utilities commission to encourage the adoption of solar in CA.
New Solar Homes Partnership (NSHP) is the rebate program for new construction of homes that will install solar. There are specific requirements needed to be eligible for the rebate.
Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) offers information for cutting energy costs, and allows the customer to do a free over the phone or online Energy Use Audit of their home or business.
Database of State Incentives for Renewable and Efficiency (DSIRE) provides directory listing incentives for renewable energy and efficiency state by state.
California Energy Commission provides an online directory compiled by the CEC provides links to solar and other alternative energy resources.
HomePower Magazine is a hands on journal of home made power with articles about people living on & off grid, how to resources on solar, wind, and other renewable technologies.
Some Good Introductory Articles
Jim Deering (JD) of Artistic Building Company is a HERS (Home Energy Rating System) energy efficiency analyst. He will come to your home and do an energy efficiency test. License #691099
Other Solar Resources
Nor Cal Solar
Celebrating its 30th year as an advocacy and education group dedicated to accelerating the use of solar energy. Publishes yearly the Solar Energy Resource Guide, which offers information on all things solar and an extensive resource list.
PO Box 3008 Berkeley, CA 94603. (510) 869-2759.
National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL)
U.S. Department of Energy sponsored lab for cutting edge research and development of renewable energy.
California Solar Energy Industries Association
CALSEIA is a trade association representing solar photovoltaic and solar thermal contractors, installers, manufacturers, distributors, consultants, engineers, and designers.
Environmental Protection Agency – Power Profiler
The Power Profiler will determine your power grid region based on your ZIP code and electric utility, compare the fuel mix and air emissions rates of the electricity in your region to the national average and determine the air emissions impacts of electricity use in your home or business.
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)
SEIA is the national trade association in the United States, representing companies doing research, manufacturing, distributing, financing, building and installing solar projects domestically and abroad.
American Solar Energy Society (ASES)
ASES is the nation’s leading association of solar professionals and advocates. Since 1954, ASES has advanced education, research and policy development towards a sustainable energy economy.
Other MSS interests
Solar Electric Initiative in Sierra Leone, West Africa
This concerned group brings rural solar electrification to an impoverished country. This project is a program of the Friends of Sierra Leone non-profit, an association of Peace Corps volunteers and country nationals. Co-owner Maggie Watson served in the Peace Corps in Sierra Leone. http://www.fosalone.org/projects.php#SEI Or contact Leslie McKeon – email@example.com
ALL Power Labs in Berkeley, CA
This organization that has perfected small scale biomass gasification. Their Power Pallet can be used in off grid or back up applications and runs a generator off of wood chips or other bio mass. http://gekgasifier.com/
Green America Come Together
We appreciate this group’s useful guide to use when shopping to make choices that benefit people and the planet. http://www.greenamerica.org/