Arizona utility APS says applications are now open for APS Solar Communities, a new program designed to increase solar access for limited- and moderate-income customers.
APS Solar Communities-approved participants agree to have a rooftop solar system installed at no cost. Customers then begin receiving a monthly $30 bill credit from APS while helping to contribute to the company’s 50% clean energy portfolio, the utility explains.
APS is collaborating with Arizona-based solar installers Arizona Solar Concepts, Discover Energy Solutions, Harmon Solar, Sunny Energy and Southface Solar. The systems will be maintained by APS – an approach modeled on the APS Solar Partner program and designed during the company’s 2016 rate review process. Participating single-family residential customers will receive $360 per year in monthly bill credits for 20 years, saving $7,200 per household during the life of the program, according to the utility.
“Our customers, community and economy deserve innovative energy programs, and that’s exactly what Solar Communities delivers,” says Marc Romito, APS’ director of customer technology. “With an investment of $10 million to $15 million per year for the next three years, we look forward to seeing some of our customers who otherwise wouldn’t have access to solar receive the benefits of renewable energy.”
The program will install solar systems on single-family houses with west- and southwest-facing roofs, which offer the greatest potential to generate energy during the late-afternoon and early-evening hours between 3-8 p.m., when customers use the most electricity, the utility says.
To qualify for APS Solar Communities, single-family households must be certified limited-income (at or below 200% of federal poverty level) or moderate-income (below 100% of median household income in Arizona). Other qualifying factors include roof size, orientation and structural integrity. The size of the systems will range from 4 kW to 8 kW.