Customer Solar Systems

Customer Owned Solar Systems

Consider generating your own electricity with solar panels to create your own carbon-free, green energy to help protect the environment for future generations while reducing your energy bills.

Ellensburg City Council authorized the use of $75,000 of City Light Dept. Conservation Funds in 2017 to promote renewable energy systems and provide incentives to City Light customers who install renewable energy systems at their location. The one-time incentive payment for a Renewable Energy System is $1,000 per kilo watt (kW) nameplate of generation capacity not to exceed $5,000 per customer. Incentives are on a first come first serve basis until the budget is exhausted. Update May 2017: 15 systems applied for the incentive and committed all of the 2017 budget.  A new budget year will start January 2018 with another $75,000 in funding available for City Light customers who install renewable energy systems.

Net Metering of Electricity

Net Metering of electricity measures electricity flowing both directions at a location with solar panels. The customer still pays the appropriate customer charge for the billing period. If generation is greater than the locations energy consumption only the customer charge will be billed. If consumption is greater than generation the 'net difference' will be billed. Excess energy produced by the solar system will be 'banked' by the utility for use in a future billing period. On April 30th of each calendar year, any remaining unused kilowatt-hour credit accumulated during the previous year shall be purchased by the electric utility at the average wholesale cost of power. Contact Energy Services early in your planning process to learn about the City's Net Metering Standards to ensure your installation complies with all codes and standards. Net Metering Interconnection Standards

Washington State Renewable Energy System Cost Recovery Credit

Customers must apply with the State of Washington Department of Revenue and complete the Renewable Energy System Cost Recovery Certification 82.16 RCW application. On review and approval of the application the State will issue a Certificate for your system and UBI/Tax Registration Number.

State incentive payments available to the City was limited to $100,000 per year. The City limited participation in the program February 2016 but customers can still install a net metered system.  The State made changes to the incentive program in July of 2017 but has not announced the details of how the increased $250,000 budget will be applied.  We will update this site as information becomes available.
Each year at the end of June the production meter will be read by utility staff with the annual kilowatt-hours generated entered on the Department of Revenue Renewable Energy System Cost Recovery Annual Incentive Payment Application. The total of all incentive payments is limited to $250,000 per year. Please check for eligibility to ensure it is available. This application must be signed and submitted to the serving utility by August 1st to be eligible for the credit.

For more information see Washington State Renewable Energy Incentives