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Made in Minnesota Solar Program seeks manufacturers’ participation

The Minnesota Department of Commerce recently invited solar manufacturers in Minnesota to participate in the Made in Minnesota Solar Incentive Program. The State passed energy legislation that established the Made in Minnesota incentive program for consumers who install solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar thermal systems using solar modules and collectors certified as manufactured in Minnesota. To participate, manufacturers must fill out certification applications—one for solar PV posted on our website and another for solar thermal to come later this summer.

Certifying manufacturers is one of the first steps in implementing the incentive program, which will launch in January 2014. The statewide incentive program will be administered by the Department of Commerce, with a budget of up to $15 million a year for 10 years, including $250,000 per year for solar thermal rebates. Incentives for solar PV are performance-based, established by a system’s energy production, and paid over 10 years rather than the historical capacity-based incentive. Systems less than 40 kW are eligible. The program will run from 2014-2023. Staffing and planning for the Made in Minnesota Solar Incentive Program is in process; more details about the program will be announced this fall.