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New York

An arrow graphic shows that New York's renewable portfolio standard increases from 26% in 2017, to 50% in 2030.

Carve-out: 8.44% of annual incremental requirement to be customer-sited
Tracking system: New York Generation Attribute Tracking System (NYGATS)

New York passed a new clean energy standard requiring investor-owned utilities (IOUs) to procure 50% of the state's electricity from clean energy sources by 2030. This builds on the state's expired renewable portfolio standard (RPS) of 30% by 2015. New York takes a central procurement approach to reach its RPS goals, mandating New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to procure most of the renewable energy through production-based incentives and other programs. Its net-metering program allows for up to 2 MW of capacity and has established community and remote net metering to encourage growth of shared solar within the state. The statewide solar incentives program, NY-Sun, offers loans and grants for non-residential customers with systems up to 200 kW.

Latest Updates

  • In the Value of Distributed Energy Resources proceeding, the Public Service Commission eliminated the aggregate net metering cap, which was previously 6% of utility's 2005 demand for solar. It stipulates that all projects interconnected after March 9, 2017 should not impact more than 2% of each utility's incremental net annual revenue.
  • The net-metering transition order issued in March 2017 provides directions on how distributed energy resources should transition from net metering to a value of distributed energy resources tariff. Beginning March 9, 2017, community solar, remote net-metered projects, and large distributed energy projects will be compensated through the Phase I Value Stack VDER tariff that includes energy (based on LMP), capacity, environmental, and demand reduction credits.

Net Metering

he state's major IOUs are required to offer net metering to their retail customers. Although some utilities have reached the 6% capacity limit, the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) has ordered utilities to continue accepting applications until a resolution has been reached regarding net metering under the New York Reforming the Energy Vision (REV). REV is the governor's comprehensive energy strategy being designed to accommodate clean energy, resiliency, and economic viability.

System size limit: Solar: 25 kW for residential; 100 kW for farms; 2 MW for non-residential.
PSEG Long Island: 25 kW for residential solar, 2 MW for non-residential solar

Aggregate cap: None
PSEG Long Island: 150 MW for solar

Credit: Utility retail rate; PSEG: Time-of-Use (TOU) rates available for TOU customers

RECs: Not addressed

Meter aggregation: Remote net metering is allowed for non-residential and farm-based customers with solar. Utilities must allow customers to assign credits from multiple host accounts to one satellite account, which should not exceed 2 MW.

Interconnection

In March 2016, New York updated its standardized interconnection requirements and application process for distributed generators to include systems ≤5MW, whereas the previous standards only addressed systems up to 2 MW. Each utility maintains a web-based system to provide current information on the status of its distributed systems.

Eligible Systems Type of Interconnection
Inverter-based systems≤50 kWy Expedited 6-step process
Certified inverter-based systems >50 kW and ≤300 1 Expedited 6-step process if approved by the utility
>50 kW and ≤5 MW Basic 11-step process for interconnection; $750 application feey

1 Systems proposed to be installed in underground network areas may be required to submit additional information and may subject to a longer review process.

System size limit: 5 MW

Liability insurance: Not required

External disconnect switch: Not required for inverter-based systems <25 kW; required for all other systems.

Third Party Ownership

Third party solar power purchase agreements are allowed in New York.

Community Solar

Community net metering allows multiple customers (minimum 10 members) to subscribe and receive credits to the electricity produced from off-site renewable generation facility ≤2MW. The group may include a single individual subscriber that has demand >25 kW, who will be limited to 40% of the total facility's output. Other subscribers will be limited to individual demand <25 kW and their total energy use must aggregate to at least 60% of the facility's output.

Community Solar NY is an effort under NY-Sun. The first phase of shared renewables effort targeted low-income residential customers and Community Distributed Generation Opportunity Zones as designated by the utilities. Under this program, projects may interconnect beginning May 1, 2016. Each project must have at least ten members and each member must be allocated at least 1 MWh per year. Projects participate in either the Residential/Small Commercial Program (<200 kW) or the Commercial/Industrial Program (>200 kW) based on size.

NYSERDA supports Solarized campaigns organized by local communities by providing technical assistance, marketing, and funding.

K-Solar is a partnership between NYSERDA and the State Education Department. K-Solar provides school districts with free tools and expertise to bring solar energy to their facilities.

State Incentive Programs

Program Administrator Incentive
NY-Sun Loan Program Energy Finance Solutions on behalf of New York State Energy Research and Development Authority PV installations <200 kW performed by a participating Solar Electric Installer are eligible for this program.

Residential customers can qualify up to $13,000, or up to $25,000 loans with higher cost-effectiveness standards. The repayment periods can be 5, 10, or 15 years and should be within the expected life of the installation. This loan provides a standard loan at interest rate of 3.99%, or 3.49% if repaid through automatic bank withdrawals.

Small business and not-for-profit organizations can obtain low interest standard loans up to $100,000, or on-bill recovery loans up to $50,000. These organizations also have the option of financing systems through a traditional loan structure. Financing up to $100,000 is provided to eligible customers at below market interest rates. NYSERDA provides 50% of the project cost up to $50,000 at 2% interest rate and the participating lender provides the rest of the loan at market rates.
NY Green Bank   Solar projects in the state can apply for loans through NY Green Bank open solicitations. The expected range of project is between $5 million - $50 million.
NY-Sun PV Incentive Program (Residential, Low-Income, and Small Business) New York State Energy Research and Development Authority This program began in 2010 and expires December 29, 2023. The program gives cash incentives for installation of approved, grid-connected residential PV systems ≤25 kW and non-residential systems ≤200 kW. It was reestablished in 2014 with the goal of supporting 3.175 GW of installed capacity by 2023.

Separate MW budgets have been allocated for three different regions of the state: Long Island, Con Edison, and Up State. The incentives available decrease as each "MW Block" is completed within a region. Please see the real-time MW Block Dashboard for the latest incentive levels.

Low-to-moderate income households (household income that is less than 80% of the State Median Income or Area Median Income, whichever is greater) receive double the standard incentive amount for systems ≤6 kW.
NY-Sun Commercial/Industrial Incentive program New York State Energy Research and Development Authority This program began in 2015 and accepts applications through December 29, 2023. It provides incentives for installation of non-residential new grid-connected solar PV systems >200 kW per electric meter.

Separate MW budgets have been allocated for different regions of the state: Con Edison and Rest-of-State.
Tax Exemptions New York State Department of Taxation and Finance; New York State Office of Real Property Tax Services; or locally administered Residential and non-residential solar systems for private use are exempt from NY State sales and compensating use taxes. Residential solar energy systems equipment and services are exempt from local sales tax in New York City.

Commercial, Industrial, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, Multifamily Residential, and Institutional sectors can obtain property tax abatement for PV system expenditures at a reduced rate. Systems installed from January 1, 2014 to December 31 by these users in New York City can obtain property tax abatement for PV system expenditures at 5% of the system expenditures per year for four years.

Utility Incentive Programs

Utility Incentive Limitations
PSEG Long Island $0.1688/kWh FIT Applicable for systems >100 kW and <2 MW. PSEG Long Island FIT II offers a 20-year contract to support up to 100 MW of new solar generation. There have been no plans to continue the program's third phase.

Resources

The list below provides some resources for each type of policy or program. Please reference and contact relevant authorities and local utilities for the most up-to-date and accurate information on state and utility policies and incentive programs.

Renewable Portfolio Standard

Net metering and interconnection

Community solar

Programs and incentives

Other