2019 Guide to Energy Trust of Oregon Solar Incentives

Getting Started With ETO Solar Incentives

So you’re interested in cash incentives to save money and energy today? Then let’s talk about the Energy Trust of Oregon (ETO) solar incentives. For people planning to carry out new construction work or any major renovations in the Portland, Oregon area, there are commercial and residential incentives for you being offered by ETO.

Official logo for being a Solar Trade Ally.

Official logo for being a Solar Trade Ally.

In most of the state of Oregon, solar incentives for renewable energy systems are provided by the Energy Trust of Oregon. They are also the state's largest provider when it comes to incentives. There are two major electric utilities who fund the Energy Trust of Oregon. These utilities are –

These utility fund ETO via a charge meant for a public purpose that is imposed on the monthly electric bills of ratepayers. The money happens to be disbursed only when there is qualified renewable energy. If you are a customer of PGE and Pacific Power, you will qualify to receive a cash-based incentive as soon as you have the solar PV system installed.

Go Solar With A Certified ETO Installer

You must be an Oregon customer of Portland General Electric or Pacific Power and working with an approved Energy Trust solar trade ally contractor to be eligible for incentives.

A complete solar installation at an Oregon vineyard.

A complete solar installation at an Oregon vineyard.

Before any construction activities can take place, you need to submit an application for the Energy Trust of Oregon solar incentives or have In order to qualify for the incentives, there are four requirements which your solar installation has to conform with –

  • At least, ten years worth of roof life

  • Possess a TRSF of about 75% or more

  • Installations must be carried out by an ETO certified Trade Ally

  • Must be a Pacific Power or PGE territory grid-tied system

Many solar companies in Oregon are partnering with the ETO as an Ally. Energy Trust of Oregon solar incentives come in the form of cash incentives, as well as, technical support which are all geared towards making your transition to solar seamless and quite affordable.

2019 Cash Incentives for Commercial Buildings

These incentives are basically available to commercial Portland General Electric (PGE), as well as, Pacific Power clients alone. The Energy Trust of Oregon solar incentive amount that you get is basically dependent on two factors which are –

  1. Your system’s size

  2. Your electric utility

Pacific Power Commercial Solar Incentives

Maximum of $25K

O to 15 kilowatts at $0.35 per Watt

16 to 125 kilowatts from $0.35 to $0.20 per Watt*. 240 kilowatts project size capacity.

Portland General Electric Solar Incentives

Maximum of $40K

O to 15 kilowatts at $0.50 per Watt

15 to 200 kilowatts at $0.50 to $0.20 per Watt*. 400 kilowatts project size capacity

The incentives mentioned above are influenced by the availability of funding and can be altered at any point in time. If any of the solar companies in Oregon is your contractor, you should check with them or with EOT.

Residential Solar Incentives 2019

These incentives are basically available to residential PGE, as well as, Pacific Power clients alone. The Energy Trust of Oregon solar incentive amount that you get is basically dependent on two factors which are –

  1. Your system’s size

  2. Your electric utility

Pacific Power

$3600 max cash incentive for each home

$0.45$ for every Watt

Portland General Electric

$3600 max cash incentive for each home

$0.45$ for every Watt

The incentives mentioned above are influenced by the availability of funding and can be altered at any point in time.

How the Energy Trust of Oregon Solar Incentives Function

If you're curious to know how the ETO solar incentives work, read along.

Firstly, ETO solar incentives can only be accessed by PGE, as well as Pacific Power clients. The Energy Trust of Oregon is in charge of the administration of these solar incentives.

If you happen to be a client of any of the above-mentioned utilities, if you have solar systems installed on your property, you stand the chance of qualifying. Solar arrays which are mounted on the ground may be eligible too.

A home showing total solar resource fraction (TSRF).

A home showing total solar resource fraction (TSRF).

The conditions, however, stipulate that you need to confirm, at least, a 75% solar window, called Total Solar Resource Fraction (TSRF), on your building. Also, you must ensure that if you work with any of the solar companies in Oregon, they must be a Trade Ally of the Energy Trust of Oregon.

Federal Solar Tax Credit is Decreasing End of 2019

Do you have any tax liability or pay federal taxes? If yes, start saving money and lower your taxes with the federal solar tax credit, also known as the Investment Tax Credit (ITC).

You will receive a tax credit from the government which gives you up to 30% coverage of every cost spent on solar installation, with parts and labor inclusive. You may access the tax credit easily the exact same year that the panels were installed on your home. However, you are expected to make utility cash incentive subtractions off the aggregate amount. Keep in mind that this program will not last forever and is bound to close soon.

Time is Running Out

For you to be eligible to receive the full 30%, it is required that you make solar installations before the 1st day of January in 2020. Below is a list of scheduled changes expected to take place and you should put them into consideration while planning to invest in solar.

  • 2016 – 2019: The tax credit remains at 30 percent of the cost of the system.

  • 2020: Owners of new residential and commercial solar can deduct 26 percent of the cost of the system from their federal tax liability.

  • 2021: Owners of new residential and commercial solar can deduct 22 percent of the cost of the system from their taxes.

  • 2022 onwards: Owners of new commercial solar energy systems can deduct just 10 percent of the cost of the system from their taxes. There is no federal credit for residential solar energy systems.

(Source: EnergySage.com)

Net Metering in Oregon and Why It’s Important

In the parts of Oregon where it rains, a solar energy system is still very active. Basically, this is down to an innovative solar incentive that is referred to as net metering, and it is legal.

If you take part in the agreement for net metering, you'll be allowed to use the solar power that is needed for your first. If you happen to generate more than the usual power, your account will be credited by your utility company.

This happens to be one reason why solar energy is very perfect in Oregon since the summer days provide an excellent time to generate lots of power. So, house owners basically get to generate excess power when the summer season is on. The extra credits which are earned for the excess generation of power are used during winter.

Image of a net energy meter.

Image of a net energy meter.

Your utility manages solar credits in an automated manner which implies that you do not need to put in any additional effort than usual. Then again, as opposed to the generally held notion, the solar panels that are installed on your house we work even if you experience cloudy skies. Although the power that you generate may not be as normal, the winter electricity generation in your will be boosted whenever a little sunshine occurs.

Is Right Right For You? Find Out Today!

You should take advantage of the Energy Trust of Oregon solar incentives today! Get started by calling us at (360) 313-7190 or by signing up for a free in-home consultation.