Renewable energy incentives

Holy Cross Energy offers incentives to members who install qualifying renewable generation at their homes or businesses. Eligible systems include those using solar, hydro, biomass, geothermal or wind energy to generate electricity. We will allow members who install generators up to 500 kW for photovoltaic systems or 50 kW for other systems to net meter the generation against the electric consumption at the same meter.

Any member interested in installing a generator behind their meter must complete and submit a Generator Interconnect Application via e-mail to renewables@holycross.com or by mail to:

Holy Cross Energy
Attn: Renewables
PO Box 2150
Glenwood Springs, CO 81601

Generator Interconnection Resources
The following Generator Interconnect Policy shall apply to all generation resources including eligible renewable energy resources applying for connection to the Holy Cross Energy System.

Holy Cross Energy strives to provide our members with safe, reliable and affordable power. As such, we will continue to evaluate our policies and operations for efficiency, safety and environmental improvements.

A non-refundable interconnection study fee of $100 must accompany each interconnection application for systems with a nameplate capacity of 12-100 kW and $250 for systems with a nameplate capacity greater than 100 kW. The applicant may be responsible for additional study costs on a case by case basis, please review the information in our Generator Interconnect Policy for additional information.

Net metering

HCE will provide net metering service to members who install eligible generation behind their electric service meter. Under net metering, the net meter will record net generation when the generator is producing more power than is being used on site and record net usage whenever consumption exceeds production. At the end of the billing month, HCE will carry any excess generation forward to offset any net consumption on the next month’s bill. This will continue for 12 months, and any excess power delivered to HCE will be purchased at the average cost of purchased power for the previous year as reported on HCE year-end financial reporting, which will vary on annual basis.

For residential members in 2019, the average effective rate for solar production is estimated at $0.10529/kWh.  The average cost of purchased power for 2019 is $0.04827/kWh, which is used to calculate true ups for any unused banked kWh during 2020. The difference between retail and wholesale power costs includes expenses associated with the distribution and transmission of electricity, operation and maintenance of the grid, and other utility operations.

HCE will net meter photovoltaic generators up to 500 kW and other generators up to 50 kW. Generators must be designed to supply no more than 120% of the electrical consumption at a meter over the prior 12 billing months (at the time of application). If insufficient billing history exists, HCE will estimate usage and specify a maximum allowable system size.

See the Renewable Energy Net Metering Service – Optional tariff sheet for further details on HCE net metering program.

How Net Metering Works and Understanding Your Bill for Renewable Energy Members

The following document explains how you receive credit on your bill for any renewable energy produced by an on-site generator. Line by line diagrams show detailed descriptions of how to understand your bill under different scenarios. This also includes a general description of all parts of the HCE bill.

How Net Metering Works (Click HERE)

Interconnection Requirements

All generators designed to operate in parallel with the HCE distribution system for any length of time must provide a Generator Interconnection Application prior to beginning construction. A HCE engineer review and approval is required for interconnection for all generators. Information on HCE requirements and evaluation process can be found at our Generator Interconnect Policy page.

Incentives

Incentives are available to HCE members who install renewable generation for net metering at their premises. Additional incentives are available for qualifying energy storage systems, with or without additional renewable generators. Current incentive levels are shown below. Incentives may be denied to members who proceed with installation of their systems prior to receiving written approval of a Generator Interconnection Application from HCE as described above.

HCE will reserve incentives for 120 days starting on the day the Generator Interconnection Application is received. Any installations not completed (including all required documentation) before the reservation expires will lose their reservation. Any system that has forfeited their reservation may be eligible for an incentive payment based on the incentive program in effect at the time all requirements are met, subject to the availability of funds.

Payment of any incentive is contingent on the assignment of all rights, title and interest in and associated with all RECs, green attributes or environmental offsets produced by the system, including the right to use all RECs for compliance with the Colorado Renewable Energy Standard.

Incentives effective until August 31, 2020

The following incentives are available until August 31, 2020, for systems that meet all HCE program requirements on a first come, first-served basis.

0-6 kW $750/kW
6-12 kW $500/kW
12-25 kW $200/kW

For example, the incentive for a 15 kW system can be calculated as shown:

6 kW x $750/kW = $4,500
12-6 kW x $500/kW = $3,000
12-15 kW x $200/kW = $600
Total available: $8,100

For non-taxable entities, Holy Cross will provide an incentive equal to 40% of the installed cost of a system (on a $ per KW basis) up to $1,500/kW for the first 25 kW installed at a site. Any eligible member must include documentation of their non-profit status at the time of application and directly own the generator. Any generator for which available federal tax credits are monetized is eligible for incentives under the tiered structure discussed above.

For example, a 50 kW system owned by a non-taxable organization that cost $3,000/kW to install could expect a rebate of $30,000 (40% x $3,000/kW x 25 kW).

New incentives effective September 1, 2020 

The following incentives are available for renewable systems that meet all HCE program requirements on a first come, first-served basis.

0-6 kW $500/kW
6-12 kW $335/kW
12-25 kW $150/kW

The following incentives are available for energy storage systems that meet all HCE program requirements on a first come, first-served basis. These can be in addition to the incentives for renewable systems.  Member must be enrolled in the Distribution Flexibility Program – Optional Tariff.

0-25 kW $250/kW

The kW of an energy storage system, for the purposes of calculating the incentive, will be defined as the lesser of the (kW max continuous) or (kWh (1-SOC*)/2), *SOC = minimum state of charge. kW and kWh is defined by the battery manufacturer.

For example, the incentive for a 15 kW solar system without energy storage can be calculated as shown:

6 kW x $500/kW = $3,000
6-12 kW x $335/kW = $2,010
12-15 kW x $150/kW = $450
Total available: $5,460

For non-taxable entities, HCE will provide an incentive equal to 40% of the installed cost of a system (on a $ per kW basis) up to $1,000/kW for the first 25 kW of renewable generation installed at a site and up to $500/kW for an energy storage system for the first 25 kW installed. Any eligible member must include documentation of their non-profit status at the time of application and directly own the generator. Any generator for which available federal tax credits are monetized is eligible for incentives under the tiered structure discussed above.

For example, a 50 kW renewable energy system owned by a non-taxable organization that cost $3,000/kW to install could expect a rebate of $25,000 (40% x $3,000/kW x 25 kW, limited to $1,000 per kW).

Renewable Energy systems installed for compliance with local or county program or code requirements, such as REMP or Eco-Build, or owned by third parties and leased to the HCE member of record are not eligible to receive an incentive payment under the above structures. However, HCE will offer a REC purchase price of $150/kW for the first 25 kW of renewable energy installed at a site. Any generation installed in excess of the applicable requirement may be eligible for incentives, please contact HCE for further information.

Program Rules & Limitations

The following rules apply to all generation incentives:

  • HCE is not liable for forfeiture of any incentive amounts due to changes in program structure, the action or failure to act of Member, or any of the Member’s consultants, employees or contractors, including the installer.  It is the responsibility of the Member to contact Holy Cross Energy directly to determine eligibility for any incentives amounts.  Projects installed by vendors not listed on HCE’s Preferred Installer list may not be eligible for incentives.
  • Generation must be sized to supply no more than 120% of the account’s previous 12 months electrical consumption. For new construction, HCE will estimate on-site electrical consumption.
  • No member may receive more than $50,000 related to the ownership of renewable generation. On September 1, 2020, this amount will be reduced to $35,000.  The member limit for energy storage systems is $15,000 and is in addition to the renewable generation limit.
  • Incentive payments will be reduced so that they do not exceed 40% of the installed cost of any project.
  • No rebates will be paid for any generation capacity in excess of 25 kW per account, including ownership of community solar generation.
  • Incentives are available on a first-come, first-served basis. No payment is guaranteed for any system that loses its incentive reservation.
  • HCE will not interconnect any system selling power to a member under a Power Purchase Agreement.
  • Members must be in good standing on all electric accounts at the date of application and continue to remain in good standing through the date that the payment is issued to be eligible for incentive payments. Good standing means no more than two disqualifying marks (late payments, disconnect for non-pay, etc.) on any electric account in the previous 12 billing months. Members will lose their eligibility to receive any incentive payment if they fall out of good standing with HCE.
  • Member owned generation facilities must be interconnected to Holy Cross’s electric distribution system to qualify for incentives and must conform to the terms of the HCE Interconnection Agreement.

Incentive Funding

Incentives for renewable generation are funded through the WE CARE rider on each HCE member’s electric bill. Incentives will be funded at the current level unless a change in funding is announced.

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