Eversource and United Illuminating commercial customers in Connecticut that go solar may qualify for a program that creates a revenue stream for them. The revenue is created by selling their Zero Renewable Energy Certificates (ZRECs) to the utility. ZRECs are the green aspects of one megawatt hour (MWh) of electricity that is generated by solar, wind, or small hydro. Business owners sell the ZRECs produced by their solar system to the utility, who needs to satisfy a renewable portfolio standard (RPS). A RPS is a regulatory mandate to increase the production of energy from renewable sources. ZRECs are a commodity that an electrical company can utilize to meet the RPS. Different and separate from the electricity being produced by solar, ZRECs are the environmental characteristic associated with zero emission electricity. A system that produces 1,000 MWh over a period of time will produce 1,000 ZRECs.They accumulate over a year and the utility company will pay you for their value at a fixed rate for 15
Types of ZREC projects:
- Small ZREC – less than or equal to 100 kW
- Medium ZREC – greater than 100 kW, but less than 250 kW
- Large ZREC – greater than 250 kW, but less than or equal to 1,000 kW
- Who is eligible for the ZREC program?
- Must be located behind the utility distribution meter
- Must not have received funding/grants from Clean Energy Finance Investment Authority, or its
- predecessor the CT Clean Energy Fund (other than low cost financing)
- Solar projects must be in service on, or after July 1, 2011
- No larger than 1,000 kW
- Must have zero-emissions
- May include solar, hydro and wind
Eligibility for ZRECs is on a case by case basis and in some instances, residential properties may qualify. For example, a farm that also has a residence on the commercial property will likely qualify. PurePoint Energy will assist you in applying for the ZREC program as part of our turn-key solar solution
with the purchase of a system. To participate one must bid on contracts offered (based on value) via an auction process. As a system owner who has successfully won a bid and participates in the ZREC program, you will receive 2 benefits from solar:
- The cash value from selling your ZRECs
- The cash value of the electricity your solar system produces that you no longer have to purchase from the utility.
It is important to work with a partner who is experienced in ZPRECs and understands the guidelines, as well as the nuances and strategies of ZREC biding to maximize their long-term value. For more information on the Connecticut ZREC program, do not hesitate to reach out to the PurePoint Energy and speak with an expert.