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Depending on the site, solar panels can generate a lot of power. Every megawatt-hour of solar power created equals one Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC). One of the biggest incentives to go solar in Massachusetts is the ability to sell SRECs to utility companies that are required to buy clean energy credits to meet state Renewable Portfolio Standards. The SREC program has changed over the years. We are currently in what is called SRECII, a variation of the original program.
State lawmakers have decided to end the SREC program by the end of 2017.
The SREC program will be replaced by the SMART program. The main difference between the two programs (in very simple terms) is that SRECs earn you a certificate that can be traded on the market. The value of an SREC is determined by market forces including supply and demand. The SMART program will pay out at a fixed rate. The rate remains the same for the duration of the incentive.
There’s still time to get in to the SRECII program.
SRECs combined with Federal and State Tax incentives can sometimes reduce the final cost of a solar array by almost half. While details about the SMART program are still being determined, it is widely believed that SRECs will be more valuable than the fixed rate offered by SMART.
The choice between SRECs and SMART is a personal one. The two programs carry pros and cons. SRECs are much more likely to earn you more savings overall but they carry a little risk since they are sold on a market. SMART will likely mean less savings in the long term, but the rate you get stays the same for the duration of the program.
SRECs have never disappointed and have always sold for great rates earning consumers a fair value for the clean energy they produce. The best way to save money is to not wait to go solar. Electric savings alone will add up to significant savings over the course of the year.
Have a question about SRECs, SMART or solar in general? Just give us a call to ask. 413-247-6045