Go Solar California, a joint effort of the California Public Utilities Commission and Governor Schwarzenegger's "Million Solar Roofs" program, had a goal to encourage Californians to install 3,000 megawatts of solar energy systems on homes and businesses by the end of 2016. For larger CA utilities such as PG&E and SCE, the rebates have run out, but for smaller municipal utilities such as the Truckee Tahoe Public Utility District, rebates still exist.
CA solar rebates are provided in one of two ways: upfront in a lump sum based on the expected performance of the system (the Expected Performance Based Buydown Program) available for smaller systems, or over the course of five years for larger systems. The EPBB incentive is a capacity-based incentive that is adjusted based on expected system performance. The incentive is calculated using an EPBB calculator that considers major design characteristics of the system, such as panel type, installation tilt, shading, orientation, and solar installation available by location.
This EPBB performance framework was established as a way to reward systems that can provide maximum solar generation.
With the ultimate goal of creating a self sustaining solar market free of government subsidies, the rebates are structured so that the incentive payments decline as the market grows or in "steps."
Through the Truckee Tahoe Public Utilities District (TTPUD), solar rebates are still available in 2015 and 2016. The Solar Rebate Schedule per Watt Installed in 2015 is $2.55 and in 2016 steps down to $2.37. In 2014 all the available rebates were claimed - a first in TTPUD history.
Consumers should check with their local municipal energy provider for rebates available through 2016.