LADWP Reports Success in Solar Program

By City News Service

The Department of Water and Power said Tuesday that its solar power rebate program was re-launched successfully and met with high demand in the first week.

As of 8 a.m. Tuesday morning, the department had processed 112 applications totaling $7.4 million in subsidies for customers who install solar photovoltaic systems. If approved, the applications would create about 3.25 megawatts of new solar energy. Another 136 online applications are pending. The solar incentive program, which provides rebates to homeowners and businesses for installing rooftop solar systems, was so popular it had to be shelved in April after demand for rebates outpaced the department’s $30 million budget by about 3-to-1.

LADWP re-launched the program Sept. 1 with a bigger budget of $60 million for the fiscal year, but about a 40 percent lower incentive level for an average residential system.

Some solar installation companies complained that the decrease in the incentive would make the rebate less attractive for homeowners and would hurt their businesses.

However, about 82 percent of the new applications were for residential energy customers. Fifteen were for commercial users, three governmental and two nonprofits.

“While any assessment of our overall program would be premature at this early stage, judging from the first few days of activity, I am very pleased with customers’ response to the revised program so far,” LADWP General Manager Ron Nichols said.

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September 8, 2011  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.


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