Incentives for Building Green

Utility incentives

■ In 2007, the North Carolina legislature passed a Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard, which requires utilities to increase their use of renewable energy and offer incentives for energy efficiency. Utility providers are now offering impressive incentive programs to meet those requirements.

■ N.C. Green Power will pay a per kilowatt rate for electricity generated from a renewable resource that is fed onto the grid.

Duke Energy/Progress


■ The Home Energy Improvement Program pays rebates of $190-500 for a variety of energy-efficient upgrades, including air duct repair/replacement, air sealing and attic insulation, HVAC audits, HVAC replacements, high-efficiency window AC units and water heater replacements.

■ The Residential New Construction Program helps consumers And the most energy-efficient, durable and comfortable new homes available today. Many of these homes come with a Heating & Cooling Energy Usage Limited Guarantee.Over 230 builders participate on the program.

■ An Energy Conservation Discount is available for all ENERGY STAR certified homes. Email:

■ The SunSense Solar PV Program pays an upfront rebate or $500 per kilowatt AC, plus a monthly bill credit of $4.50 per kilowatt for installed photovoltaics.


■ The Residential New Construction Program provides incentives to builders and contractors building energy-efficient homes in the Duke Energy Progress service territory.


■ The Energy Efficiency for Business Program offers incentives for energy-efficient equipment and technical assistance in new construction and retroAt projects. Rebates can pay for up to 75 percent of project costs.

Duke Energy


■ Smart $aver offers up to $550 in incentives and savings on qualifying equipment and services.

■ Home Energy House Call is a free in-home energy review for eligible Duke Energy customers. It includes a free Energy Efficiency Starter Kit, valued at $30.

■ ENERGY STAR-certified homes qualify for lower electric rates. 800.777.9898.


■ The Smart $aver Incentive program offers businesses cash for installing high-efficiency lighting, HVAC, pumps and other qualifying equipment. 866.380.9580



■ Residential customers whose homes meet the EPA’s ENERGY STAR for New Homes guidelines are eligible for PSNC’s Residential Rate Schedule 102, which is a discount of $0.05 per therm.

■ The company has implemented a $100 rebate for replacing gas water heaters and furnaces with high-efficiency versions in residential buildings:

■ Residential customers with homes built prior to 1993 are eligible to receive a $25 in-home energy audit.


■ Commercial customers whose buildings meet LEED-NC certification are eligible for PSNC’s Rate Schedule 127, which is a discount of $0.05 per therm.

■ $100 rebate for replacing older gas water heaters and furnaces with high-efficiency versions in commercial buildings:

■ PSNC offers $25 home energy audits for natural gas customers.


Individual Renewable energy

■ Through the end of 2016, a 30 percent tax credit for solar water heat, photovoltaics, wind, fuel cells, geothermal heat pumps and other solar technologies with no caps.

Businesses Renewable energy

■ A 30 percent tax credit is available for investing in solar water heat, solar space heat, solar-thermal electric, solar-thermal process heat, photovoltaics, wind, biomass, geothermal electric, fuel cells, geothermal heat pumps, Combined Heat and Power (CHP)/cogeneration, solar hybrid lighting, direct-use geothermal and microturbines. Available through the end of 2016.

■ Accelerated depreciation (Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System — MACRS) for eligible renewable energy technologies.

North Carolina

Individual Renewable energy

■ A 35-percent tax credit for passive-solar space heat, solar water heat, solar space heat, solar-thermal electric, photovoltaics, wind, biomass, hydroelectric, geothermal heat pumps, solar pool heating and daylighting. Available through the end of 2015. Caps vary by technology.

Businesses Renewable energy

■ A 35 percent tax credit for passive-solar space heat, solar water heat, solar space heat, solar-thermal electric, solar-thermal-process heat, photovoltaics, landfill gas, wind, biomass, hydroelectric, renewable transportation fuels, geothermal heat pumps, spent pulping liquor, direct-use geothermal, solar pool heating, daylighting, anaerobic digestion, ethanol, methanol and biodiesel. Available through the end of 2015. $2.5M cap for all technologies.

Local Government

City Of Asheville

■ A $100 permit-fee rebate for Green Built NC certification; $100 for ENERGY STAR certification.

■ A $50 permit-fee rebate for each of the following: geothermal heat pump, solar energy system, wind energy system and stormwater/graywater collection device to be used for irrigation.

■ 50 percent rebate for plan review fees for commercial projects seeking LEED certification.

Town Of Black Mountain

■ A $500 permit fee rebate for buildings certified under the Green Built NC or LEED programs.

Catawba County

■ A 25 percent permit fee rebate for buildings certified under the Green Built NC, ENERGY STAR, NAHB Green or LEED programs.

For detailed information on financial incentives, visit

You can also view this article as it was originally published on page 56 of the 2014 edition of the directory or as a pdf.