Archive for October, 2011

PV Installations Rise amid 1603 Grant Concerns

Posted October 4th, 2011 by SRECTrade.

A recent report conducted by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM Research found that the US solar PV industry continued its growth through the first two quarters of 2011. Despite a slight decline in residential PV installations from Q1 to Q2, commercial and utility-scale solar installations surged, accounting for over 200 of the 314 MW installed in Q2 alone.

The impressive growth is partially attributed to the somewhat unpredictable schedule of the federal 1603 cash-grant, which covers 30% of project costs for commercial solar systems. Toward the end of 2010, project developers scrambled to get as many projects in the pipeline as quickly as possible over concerns that the grant would expire at the end of the year. Q4 in 2010 installed over 360 MW of capacity, up from roughly 187 MW in Q3 2010.

A carry-over from last year’s late rush to get projects underway contributed to the impressive numbers posted in Q1 2011. Though the grant program was extended through 2011, there is yet again a rising fear that the grant’s expiration is imminent. The US Congressional Join Select Committee (JSC), which was created to cut at least $1.2 trillion in federal spending, will likely eliminate the grant program upon its scheduled expiration at the end of the year. Though the program has been successful, awarding $8.5 billion overall (three times the projected amount of $3 billion), continuing the government-funded program is simply counter to JSC’s goal of reducing the current budget deficit.

A repeat of last year’s late surge is expected going into the last few months of 2011. In order to qualify for a grant, a system must begin construction by the end of the year. Similar to last year, a project is deemed to have begun construction based on the program’s “5% safe harbor” rule, which requires at least 5% of the total cost of the property or system to be paid by December 31, 2011. Projects only then need to be completed by the end of 2016 to qualify for the grant.

October 2011 SREC Auction Results

Posted October 3rd, 2011 by SRECTrade.

SRECTrade’s October 2011 SREC Auction has completed. Below are the clearing prices at which SRECs traded this month.

October SREC Prices Energy Year Ending
State 2010 2011 2012*
Delaware $90.00
Maryland In-State $200.00
Maryland Out-of-State
New Jersey $670.00 $670.00 $205.00
Ohio In-State $395.00
Ohio Out-of-State
Pennsylvania $24.99
Washington, DC $61.00 $101.00

*Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania operate on a June-May energy year.
“-” reflects no sale, which would result if there were no matching bids and offers that cleared for a sale in the auction.

State Market Observations:

Delaware: Legislation increasing the SREC requirement went into effect this past June but the market has yet to pick up in response. Stakeholders in DE continue to work to wards a long-term SREC contract solicitation program for new facilities. Meanwhile, the SREC market will likely pick up at the end of the energy year when electricity suppliers are more active.

Maryland: SRECs continue to hover around $200, as the in-state supply of 28.3 MW grows near the ~29 MW of capacity that was required on average throughout 2011. The state seems on a good pace to maintain a balanced supply relative to demand. As 2011 comes to an end, a shortage of SRECs in the state, if any, will be reflected by an increase in prices at the end of the trading period in the first quarter of 2012. Out-of-state SRECs continue to be a non-factor in Maryland.

Massachusetts: The next batch of SRECs will be created on October 17th for Q2 2012 generation. SRECTrade holds special quarterly auctions for Massachusetts SRECs on the day they are created. The next quarterly MA SREC auction closes on Monday October 17th.

New Jersey: Last minute purchasing fueled by the predicted shortage of 2011 SRECs drove pricing up for the few remaining 2011 SRECs in the market. Meanwhile, the 2012 market rebounded to $205 after dropping to $165 last month. As more buyers become active in the 2012 market, prices should continue to correct, though, given the continued influx of supply (now at 430 MW), any price corrections will be limited unless the state takes some action.

Ohio: In-State SRECs continue to be in high demand as prices clear at or near the SACP again. Meanwhile, the demand for out-of-state SRECs has slowed down at this time, likely due to the effects of a significant oversupply in Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania: HB 1508 was recently introduced to address the state’s SREC market. This marks the beginning of a long process to rescue the PA SREC market. Until then, SRECs will continue to bottom out.

Washington, DC: New legislation closing the DC market borders and increasing requirements is having an impact as prices jumped back up over $100 for the first time this year.

For historical pricing please see this link. As mentioned the Massachusetts quarterly auction order period will close on Monday October 17th. For all other states, the order period for the November auction will close on Monday, October 31, 2011 at 5:00 p.m Eastern. For more information, please visit

$4.5M solar grant bridges Connecticut’s transition to SRECs (a.k.a. ZRECs)

Posted October 3rd, 2011 by SRECTrade.

After successfully passing Bill 1243, Connecticut will be moving to an SREC-based solar financing program in 2012 (technically referred to as ZREC or LREC for “low-” or “zero-” emission). Per the guidelines set forth in the legislation, the state’s electricity suppliers must propose plans for the SREC solicitation program by the end of this year. Given that the law doesn’t require the first contracts to be signed until the end of 2012, we expect the details for the Connecticut SREC program to be finalized in mid- to late-2012.

In an effort to bridge the time until SRECs launch in Connecticut, the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (formerly CT Clean Energy Fund) has developed a solicitation for solar projects by experienced developers. $4.5M in solar funding is available through the competitive RFP. The solicitation period will be open until December 30, 2011 and results will be announced in March 2012. However, any projects that take the grant will not be eligible for the SREC program commencing in late 2012. The CEFIA will hold an information session at the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, 79 Elm Street, Hartford, CT on October 12, 2011. See below for more information and check out this website for complete details.

The Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority (CEFIA), formerly the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF), has combined the former Best of Class and Public Buidlings solicitations.  The new solicitation, the On-Site Renewable Distributed Generation (OSDG) Program Best of Class, Public Buildings and Affordable Housing Request for Proposals (RFP) solicits applications from eligible entities working with experienced renewable energy developers. There will be a strong emphasis on evaluating the financial feasibility of proposed projects as well as the ability of applicants to complete project construction in a timely manner. The intent of the funding is to enable owners of eligible renewable energy systems to “break even” over the life of the equipment, with a fair and reasonable return on investment compared to purchasing the equivalent amount of power from an electric utility company.

CEFIA is currently offering OSDG grants through an RFP format. The OSDG Best of Class, Public Buildings and Affordable Housing RFP will be offered to bridge the time until the launch of the Zero-Emission and Low-Emission Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) programs become available to the market and to prepare the market for the transition from a grant-based program model to a REC-based program model. The competitive, solar photovoltaic (PV) only RFP will close at 5:00 p.m. EST on December 30, 2011. The closing date for the rolling submission, other technologies RFP will be announced in early October 2011.

Funding available under this RFP is as follows:

Best of Class, Public Buildings and Affordable Housing

Type of RFP




Fuel Cell

To Be Announced

Rolling Submission

Other Technologies

To Be Announced

Rolling Submission
Competitve, PV-only RFP Timeline Activities
Activity Date
Issue RFP document
September 12, 2011
Issue press release
September 12, 2011
Questions accepted in writing – E-mail only –
September 12, 2011 to
October 12, 2011

Information session – Phoenix Room, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, 79 Elm Street, Hartford
4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

October 12, 2011
Final question responses posted on CEFIA Website
October 31, 2011
RFP response due date – Competitive solicitation only
December 30, 2011
5:00 p.m. EST
Eligibility rejection/acceptance letters issued – Competitive solicitation only
January 2012
CEFIA staff recommendations to the Board – Competitive solicitation only
February 2012
Funding authorization letters issued – Competitive solicitation only
March 2012

The timeline for the rolling submission, other technologies RFP will be announced in early October 2011.

Links to Important Information

Competitive Solicitation RFP document – PV only
Competitive Solicitation RFP application – PV only