Spread the Solar Love with RES-BCT

We’ve mentioned California’s RES-BCT program, which stands for Renewable Energy Self-Generation Bill Credit Transfer, several times in other blog posts, but we think it deserves a standalone explanation. Time and time again we hear from public customers that they didn’t think they can go solar because they don’t have an area big enough to host a system large enough to offset their load. The RES-BCT program solves that issue.

Very simply, the program allows public entities to build one larger system and apply the net metering credits to multiple meters they own, thereby making the investment in solar more cost effective. Before RES-BCT, customers would need to build one solar array at each of their meters. Now, public entities can build up to a five megawatt (MW) system.

Due to their size, RES-BCT projects are often located on semi-developed land versus existing rooftops. While this allows for many benefits, it can trigger multiple considerations, including:

  • Interconnection Upgrades
  • CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act)
  • Title review

There is a 250 MW cap for RES-BCT across the three main California utilities. As of Q1 2016, SDG&E has 13 MW left, PG&E has 73 MW left and SCE has 95MW left. While there is still capacity remaining, we expect the pace of RES-BCT project to increase this year now that we have more clarity on some key policies, such as the extension of the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC). So, it’s best to start moving on a project sooner than later.

RES-BCT is a relatively new way to model solar installations, so it’s best to work with a solar company that has some experience with these types of deals.

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