The State of Energy Storage in The Mid-Atlantic 2020
Renewable energy is the country’s fastest-growing source of energy in the United States. Between 2000 and 2018, its popularity has grown a hundredfold. By 2050, solar energy generation and distribution are expected to grow by up to 48 percent. This makes it the fastest growing source of electricity in the country.
Solar batteries ensure power continuity if there’s an electricity grid outage in a business or home setup. The system may cost slightly higher than a typical diesel generator. However, you’ll have backup power without greenhouse gas emissions. Some homeowners have resorted to “getting off the grid” thanks to solar batteries. But you’ll require a more extensive storage system to disconnect.
Here’s an overview of the state of energy storage in the Mid-Atlantic states.
State of Maryland
The Old Line State joined the country’s leaders in energy storage by passing new legislation establishing a tax credit for batteries. Thanks to the state’s solar battery rebate program, companies and homeowners can benefit from financial incentives to acquire batteries to store energy on-site.
The tax incentives make Maryland the first in the United States to offer financial incentives directly to energy storage installations.
How The State’s Solar Battery Program Works
Maryland’s solar battery tax credit shares the same structures as other solar tax credits. Homeowners and entrepreneurs now enjoy credit against state tax at 30% of what they pay to install an energy storage system. This value caps at $75,000 for commercial projects and $5.000 for residential projects.
The tax credit is a valuable incentive for those who’d love to install energy storage systems. But since the state relies on a net metering system, using a battery may not lead to higher solar savings in the long run.
If your system connects to the grid and you can access net metering, the grid will basically serve as one giant battery. If you get surplus electricity from your solar panels, the extra power can go back to the grid and earn you credits on your bill.
State of Virginia
On 11 February 2020, Virginia lawmakers passed a bill supporting the move to ensure the US Commonwealth’s electric grid goes entirely clean by 2020. The bill also includes the objective of hitting a 2.4 GW energy storage deployment objective by 2035.
The Clean Economy Act sets one of the highest energy storage targets in the nation and is a pivotal move for Virginia’s energy storage market. The State Corporation Commission is now tasked with approving qualified, new energy storage projects.
From Roanoke to Virginia Beach, homeowners within the state are going solar, and continue to cut their energy cost by hundreds of dollars. This is a result of the ever-decreasing installation costs and more robust incentives and rebates.
Net Metering in Virginia
By signing up for net metering in Virginia, you will earn credits on your power bill per kilowatt-hour for the surplus energy you take back to the grid. These credits will make a difference whenever you require more power than what your energy storage system is currently producing.
Federal Solar Energy Tax Credit
This is also called the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) and is among the most attractive incentives for homeowners within Virginia. The incentive offers a 26-percent tax deduction of your entire solar equipment cost thru 2020. This results in significant savings on your solar and energy storage installation.
Residential Property Tax Exemption
A solar energy system installed on your property could significantly raise the value of your home. Those who intend to sell their property will appreciate this information, but does a higher home value raise your property taxes? No. In Virginia, the law exempts solar energy equipment from any form of local property tax.
State of Pennsylvania
The electricity that flows through most area homes in the United States is usually natural gas-fired or coal-fired or comes from nuclear power plants. Occasionally, some families power their homes through batteries.
Unknown to many, the PJM interconnection, the regional grid responsible for powering businesses and homes in Pennsylvania, contains nearly half the country’s utility-scale battery capacity. The energy information administration places this capacity at 49 percent.
The region offers 274 megawatts, with at least two of the facilities located in Somerset County. These batteries help maintain the grid in case there’s a sudden spike in demand. However, they are only able to sustain power for about 45 minutes. The batteries also store electric power generated by intermittent sources like solar panels and windmills.
Residents in the state of Pennsylvania also enjoy net metering. The system capacity limits for residential and non-residential are 50 KW and 3 MW, respectively.
If you are a utility consumer with your net-metered system, you will be credited per kilowatt generated by your system. The monthly bill will be based on the kilowatt-hours consumed, less the generated hours. If your system generates more than your consumption for a particular month, you are entitled to a credit for every surplus kilowatt-hour.
Federal Tax Credit
In 2019, eligible taxpayers who installed solar systems and batteries earned a federal tax credit of 30% on qualified expenses. For 2020, the credit rate is 26 percent, and it is expected to reach 22% in 2021. The tax incentive for homeowners’ solar and energy storage systems ends beyond 2021.
Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SREC)
This is another incentive to help you save from your solar and stored energy. Homeowners who rely on solar panels earn a renewable energy credit once their systems hit the 1,000-kilowatt-hour mark. The SREC value is based on market value.
With all these incentives, residents of Pennsylvania state continue to enjoy lower costs of going green.
State of West Virginia
Two main factors have contributed to the increased adoption of energy storage in West Virginia: technological advancements and decreasing costs. However, the state offers no incentives to homeowners or businesses who wish to generate all or part of their power supply from renewable sources.
This means that the state lacks its Solar Renewable Energy Credit market. Homeowners within West Virginia who own solar energy systems can sell their credits in the nearby markets. Also, no legislation in the state enables PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) programs, and there aren’t any state-specific incentives.
Work with Energy Storage Experts
Are you interested in installing solar energy and/or battery systems for your home or business within the Mid-Atlantic region? Mountain View Solar is here to help.
Deeply rooted within the Mid-Atlantic communities, mtvSolar has grown to join the region’s largest and most reliable PV integrators. We are experts in the field, and our installations are available for commercial, residential, and municipal levels. If you’d like to learn more, reach out to us at Mountain View Solar today for a free, zero-pressure estimate.