DEMEC - Green Energy Program Incentives

November 16, 2009


Delaware's municipal utilities offer rebates to their customers for the installation of residential and non-residential photovoltaic (PV), solar water heating, small wind, geothermal heat pump, and fuel cell systems. These rebates are a component of a larger state-wide Green Energy Program, which consists separate programs for Delmarva Power & Light (DP&L), the state's only investor-owned utility; the Delaware Electric Cooperative (DEC); and programs offered individual municipal utilities. This separation arises from the state's renewables portfolio standard (RPS) legislation, which permits municipal electric companies and rural electric cooperatives to opt out of the RPS requirements in favor of contributing to the existing Green Energy Fund or creating their own independent funds. Both the municipal utilities and the DEC opted out of the RPS and chose to create their own funds. Funding for all three programs is separate although they are all administered collectively by the Delaware Energy Office. Customers may only apply for incentives from the fund to which they contribute through a surcharge on their utility bills. All systems must meet a set of standardized equipment, warranty, and installation requirements and be installed by a program approved contractor. Both on- and off-grid renewable electricity systems are eligible for incentives. Although there are no specific wind resource requirements, wind energy applications may be rejected if it is determined that the wind resource is not adequate for reasonable utilization of the equipment as recommended by the manufacturer. Each municipal utility has the freedom to determine certain conditions of rebates for their own customers. As a result, while program terms are generally similar across all of the municipal utilities, rebate levels and maximum incentives sometimes vary by technology and utility. The following is a generalized list of program incentives as they apply to customers of most municipal utilities (exceptions noted below):

  • PV: 33.3% of installed costs up to $15,000 for residential systems and $30,000 for non-residential systems
  • Wind: 33.3% of installed costs up to $15,000 for residential systems and $30,000 for non-residential systems
  • Solar Water Heating (domestic hot water): 50% of installed costs up to $3,000 for residential systems and $10,000 for non-residential systems.
  • Solar Water Heating (radiant heating): 50% of installed costs up to $5,000 for residential systems and $10,000 for non-residential systems
  • Fuel Cells: 50% of installed costs up to $15,000 for residential systems and $30,000 for non-residential systems
  • Geothermal Heat Pumps: Lesser of $500 or $600 per ton (based on efficiency) or 50% of installed costs, up to $2,500 or $3,000 for residential systems (based on efficiency) and $20,000 for non-residential systems
The cities of New Castle and Clayton do not offer any rebates for renewable energy systems and the City of Lewes does not offer rebates for wind electric systems. Notably, the cities of Dover and Seaford have reduced incentives for PV and wind energy systems to 25% of installed costs, subject to maximum rebates of $7,500 for residential systems and $15,000 for non-residential systems. The city of Seaford has slightly different incentive levels and maximum incentives for solar water heating (domestic and radiant heating), fuel cells, and geothermal heat pumps. The program regulations contain a detailed list of incentive calculations and maximum incentives for each utility. Please see the program website for additional information on program rules, incentive applications and program status.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: State
Category: Financial Incentive
State: Delaware
Incentive Type: Rebate Program
Web Site:
Administrator: Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control
Start Date: 09/24/2009 (as amended)
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar Water Heat
  • Solar Space Heat
  • Solar Photovoltaics
  • Wind (All)
  • Geothermal Heat Pumps
  • Wind (Small)
  • Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels
Incentive Amount: Vary by technology and utility
Maximum Incentive: Vary by technology and utility; PV system costs may not exceed $12/watt and wind system costs may not exceed $5/watt
Eligible System Size: Generally no system size restrictions, except wind turbines must have a capacity of at least 500 watts
Equipment Requirements: All systems must be new and carry a full five-year warranty; electricity generating systems (on- or off-grid) must meet applicable UL, IEEE, and NEC standards; SRCC certification required for solar water heating systems; See regulations for detailed requirements
Installation Requirements: Systems must be installed by a participating contractor
Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits: Remains with customer/producer


Name: 26 Del. C. § 363
Date Enacted: 07/21/2005
Effective Date: 06/01/2006
Name: Municipal Utilities' Green Program Fund Program Regulations
Effective Date: 09/24/2009 (as amended)


Name: Scott Lynch
Organization: Delaware Department of Natural Resources and
Phone: (302) 653-2733

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.