Solar/Renewable Energy

Putting a Number on Solar Cost            Solar

Gastonia's Renewable Energy Credit Rider

Solar Overview
North Carolina is a leader when it comes to new solar development. With projects ranging from 1kW residential rooftop systems to 10MW solar farms, the detail surrounding these projects can vary widely. As such, the North Carolina Municipal Power Agency (NCMPA1) and the City of Gastonia are working together to provide a smooth process for completing your solar PV project.

With a Buy All/Sell All approach, we encourage and promote solar PV projects that connect safely to our grid while also ensuring a fair cost distribution among all rate payers.

General Information by Project Size
The appropriate steps for any solar PV project will vary depending upon size and projected system impact. The following guidelines are offered to help with your project.
  • Review our Interconnection Standards.
  • Complete the appropriate Interconnection Application.
  • If further study is needed, the owner pays appropriate deposits and the study process begins.
  • Upon acceptance by the City of Gastonia, the Interconnection Agreement is signed by both parties.
  • Obtain local permits for the related work from the City's Permitting Department (704.866.6729).
  • Execute Power Purchase Agreement form with fixed or variable rate agreed upon and payment of facility equipment.
  • Work with installer to ensure that your generator is properly registered and all appropriate forms have been completed.

Once the project is complete, a Certificate of Completion and Acceptance is issued by the City of Gastonia.

General Notes for All Systems
The City of Gastonia reserves the right to require further study, including but not limited to system feasibility and system impact. The cost of these studies and any subsequent utility system upgrades will be the responsibility of the solar PV system owner.

The system owner will be responsible for all work and associated equipment purchases. Typical expenses will include a second meter, permit costs, and any work related to utility system interconnection. Interconnection Agreements should be executed before construction begins.

System Payback Example for a 5kW Rooftop System
Incentives currently drive most of the benefit within the North Carolina solar landscape. Today there exists a federal tax credit of 30%. In addition, NCMPA1 offers an avoided cost buy back with rates determined by customer election of a variable or longer term fixed schedule. As long as these assumptions remain in play, a residential 5kW rooftop installation with initial investment of $12,500 might expect a payback of approximately 15 years. Included in this scenario is an estimated annual utility credit of $315.

Since tax credits form a significant portion of the calculation, consult with your tax advisor.

Contact Information:
Gary Lutz
Power Systems Engineer/Rates Specialist
1300 N. Broad Street, Gastonia, NC 28054
(PO Box 1748, Gastonia, NC 28053-1748)
704.866.6824 (office)
704.836.0055 (fax)

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