GEO announces application deadline for 2009 solar thermal rebates

Residents and small businesses in Archuleta County interested in obtaining a rebate for installation of solar thermal (hot water) systems, must submit applications by April 20, 2009.

The closing date for the matching grants available locally through the Four Corners Office for Resource Efficiency (4CORE) and La Plata Electric Association (LPEA) was recently announced by the grantor, the Governor’s Energy Office (GEO). Homeowner new system rebates are $1,500 or $3,000, depending on the size of the solar thermal system installed; homeowner repaired/retrofitted system rebates are 30 percent, up to $3,000; business new system rebates are 30 percent, up to $9,000. Systems must be installed or repaired/retrofitted by June 30, 2009.

LPEA and 4CORE originally were granted matching grants totaling $102,000 ($204,000 with the match) to encourage installation of the renewable energy systems. Systems generally range in price between $7,000 and $12,000. Federal tax credits of 30 percent, with no cap are also available to help mitigate the cost.

“With a combination of the GEO rebates and tax credits, Colorado home and business owners can save 50-55 percent on solar hot water installations,” reminded Aileen Tracy, 4CORE executive director. “In addition, these systems can save an estimated $250-$500 per year in energy costs. The GEO program also assists Colorado achieve its Climate and Energy Action Plan carbon reduction goals, and increase Colorado’s energy independence.”

Colorado’s Solar Rebate Program was initiated by the GEO in response to the increasing demand for renewable energy incentives in the state. Both LPEA and 4CORE are considered Program Partners and have matched the state funds. If Program Partners across the state do not take advantage of their allocated dollars prior to April 20, the GEO will redistribute any remaining funds to those areas with higher demand.

“So, even if we do max out the original grant, we have opportunity to receive additional funds,” said Sue Maxwell, LPEA project specialist. “We’re urging anyone who believes they will be able to install a solar thermal system prior to June 30 to apply, or at least give us a call and discuss options.”

For further information and to download applications for both the LPEA and 4CORE rebates, visit http://fourcore.org/rebate_programs.html or call 259-1916. Completed forms should be mailed to Solar Thermal Rebate Program, 10 Town Plaza, No. 190, Durango CO 81301.

The Four Corners Office for Resource Efficiency aspires to make a difference in the community by promoting resource conservation, energy efficiency and the use of clean, renewable sources of energy to decrease the emission of pollutants, protect public health, and strengthen the economy. For further information, visit www.fourcore.org.