South Carolina Solar Power at a Glance

South Carolina Solar Power at a Glance
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Electricity costs

0.0/10

Renewable Portfolio Standards

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Solar Carve Out

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Net Metering

10.0/10

Interconnection

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Performance Payments

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Incentives/Rebates

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State Tax Credits

10.0/10

Property Tax Exemption

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Sales Tax Exemption

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Pros

  • Net Metering Policy
  • State Tax Credit

Cons

  • High electricity costs
  • No Renewable Portfolio Standards
  • No Solar Carve Out
  • No Interconnection Policies
  • No Solar Performance Payment Program
  • No Incentives/Rebates
  • No Property Tax Exemption
  • No Sales Tax Credit

Solar Power in South Carolina

Solar Power South Carolina

Introduction

South Carolina has many reasons to preserve their beautiful State through the use of renewable energy. It is filled with many landmarks and is comprised of beautiful beaches and a wonderful atmosphere not only for visiting but for its many residents as well. While this State is not as pro-active as some of the others when it comes to encouraging solar power it is making some strides forwards. When it comes to electrical costs, South Carolina lists #18 as being the highest throughout the country. Homeowners in this state pay approx. 13 cents per kWh of electricity.

Average Costs of Going Solar

This is based on a 5kW solar system. For those that are now ready to go solar here in South Carolina they are looking at an upfront cost of $20,000. From this they can deduct the available incentives of $10,686 which brings it down to $9,314 for the first year of costs.

Savings for Solar Power South Carolina

Of course savings is one of the biggest incentives of going with solar energy, and the average monthly savings against the utility bill rings in at about $68. month. In addition to this it estimated that the solar system will increase the value of the home by about $16,224.

Payback Periods For Carolina Solar Systems

For this size system you are looking at a payback period of 9 years for your solar unit.

Return On Investment On Solar Electric System

ROI is important for any type of investment and here for a South Carolina Solar system you can expect a ROI of 13.6%

South Carolina Solar Power Incentives

Current South Carolina Legislative Environment For Solar

While every State differs in their approach to renewable energy South Carolina is not classed as one of the more progressive States. Up until recently the State has no Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). This is a standard that each state sets with a mandate to have a specific percentage of energy generated by renewable resources by a specified date. This year South Carolina did set a RPS of only 2% to be reached by 2021. Included in the mandate is that facilities that are between 1MW and 100MW will generate 1%, while the other 1% is to be generated by facilities less than 1MW.

South Carolina does not have a Carve Out Policy as part of the RPS. A Solar Carve out is where the utility companies must produce a specified amount of their energy from the sun.

The State is also weak on its interconnection rules.

Incentives Available For South Carolina Solar

As of 2016 South Carolina has the 19th best solar power rebates.

Residents of South Carolina are now being offerd a $1/watt rebate of the cost of their solar panel system. This is being offered through Duke Energy. It is actually an excellent rebate compared to those in many other states. This rebate creates a $5,000 reduction of the cost of a $20,000 5-kW solar system.

Solar Performance Payments

This is a system that rewards solar system users for the amount of electricity that their system produces. The rewards come as either per kWh bonuses or solar renewable energy certificates. The bonuses go towards reducing the electrical bill, whereas the certificates are sold. It is not sure how long this particular incentive will last.

South Carolina does not offer any property tax exemption or any sales tax exemption for those having a solar system installed.

South Carolina Net Metering

Net metering allows those who are enjoying solar energy to sell back any solar energy that is not used to the utility company. In 2014 the State did mandate a new set of net metering rules. Basically what it entailed is homeowners getting a rebate at the end of each year for solar power that you generated in excess of what was used. There are some flaws in the rules that are currently being worked on.

South Carolina Solar Energy

Rebates / Tax Credits

There is the 30% Federal tax credit.

Plus, the State tax credit of 25% up to a maximum of $3,500 or 50% of tax liability. South Carolina ranks as the 10th best when it comes to this solar credit.

All of the rebates and incentives added together dramatically reduces the cost of the system.

Summary:

While South Carolina may be somewhat weak in some area of solar power energy they are making steps forward and when you look at the substantial start up savings then the monthly savings going forward, now makes it a good time for those in South Carolina to make the switch over to solar.