Xcel solar incentives to be rolled backPublished 9:58am Monday, August 20, 2012
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Xcel Energy plans to roll back its solar energy incentive program next year, leaving at least one manufacturer concerned about its future in Minnesota.
Xcel’s Solar Rewards program gives upfront rebates to homeowners and business owners who install solar panels. Xcel says the $5 million program has met its goals and will end by 2014.
Silicon Energy president Gary Shaver said the rebates help because it’s still expensive to produce solar panels in Minnesota compared to manufacturing in China. The company makes solar panels in Mountain Iron, a town of around 3,000 on the Iron Range.
The state Department of Commerce still has to approve Xcel’s proposal to end the solar incentive program. But, Xcel says it’s not obligated to continue the voluntary program under state law.