Solar Panel Rebate Programme Ends This Month

April 16, 2014

solar renewable-energy-genericThe Department of Energy’s Solar Photovoltaic Rebate Initiative which began in 2009 will end this month following five years of steady growth and a notable increase in solar panel and residential solar hot-water installations.

A spokesperson said, “The rebate scheme began as an incentive to offer residents up to $5,000 for the installation of solar photovoltaic panels in their homes and was shortly followed by solar hot-water rebates of up to $1,500.

“Although the rebate programme has been successful in encouraging the adoption of residential solar installations, the initiative has now surpassed the $191,000 in budgeted funds available for this fiscal year.

Minister of Education and Economic Development, Dr. Grant Gibbons noted, “When the initiative began in 2009, it was intended that the total allocation for the programme would be $500,000. To date, the Department of Energy has issued over $650,000 in solar rebates, and at the end of this fiscal year, it is anticipated that more than $800,000 will have been spent on rebates.

“Now there are more than 150 homes interconnected to the grid, selling their excess energy to BELCO at a one-to-one rate – meaning that whatever rate the customer is paying per kilowatt hour is what they are credited for excess production.”

Dr. Gibbons added, “Technical advances and a thriving international marketplace for solar technologies have caused manufacturing prices to drop by more than 25% on average for solar PV panels since the initiative began. Now the Government must focus its efforts and resources on creating sustainable and targeted strategies to increase the adoption of renewable energy technologies.

“Examples of these efforts include working with BELCO to increase the number of interconnected residential customers allowed onto the grid beyond the current limit of 200, and working with the Department of Planning to streamline the installation approval process.

“The Government is also exploring options to reduce the ‘soft costs’ of renewable energy, which include expenses that are not strictly defined as labour or cost of goods, but rather things such as permits, licensing fees and processing times. Finally, there is a complete overhaul of energy legislation under way, which will also encompass regulatory reform.

“Government remains committed to renewable energy and other means of supporting sustainable development. We are focusing our efforts on legislative reform, which, in addition to modernizing Bermuda’s energy regulatory regime, will also provide a robust and sustainable platform for renewable energy developments of all sizes.”

“While the rebate programme is ending, the Department of Energy will honour all applications that have already been received and assigned rebate numbers. The rebate budget for this fiscal year has already been fully subscribed; therefore, as of today, no new numbers will be assigned. For more information, rebate holders can contact the Department of Energy at 292-4595, or”

Read More About

Category: All, Environment, News

Comments (14)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. timing sux! says:

    Just as I was going to install PV panels on my roof….ugh. Any chace of extending this?

  2. BermudaBob says:

    yes, the timing does suck. just put a deposit down on Panels.

    • agreed but.... says:

      Did you read the last paragraph of the article? No new rebate numbers given so the programme has essentially stopped.

  3. sage says:

    So those who could afford to go solar first got $5,000 each, and those who struggle to achieve energy independence will be on our own.

  4. Suspicious says:

    Quite the co-incidence that this happened a few days after belco released some terrible financial results. Glad the OBA is supporting our monopolies to the death :)

    • Family Man says:

      You also might want to consider that Belco has requested a change to the facilities fee charge. They now want larger electricity users to pay a higher fee to subsidize the lower electricity users such as those who could afford to install an expensive solar system.

      So large struggling families will now subsidize the more affluent among us. Its great to be a monopoly.

      • huh? says:

        So because I try to conserve electricity I can afford to install solar panels and don’t deserve a break on my facilities charge? Damn.

  5. Odd decision says:

    Why not phase this rebate out slowly, instead of suddenly stopping it all together? Doesn’t make sense to me…

  6. Jesus says:

    It is lord of decision and time that allows these to happen.

  7. Miguelito says:

    Please find a way to keep the rebate in place, if possible. Solar is a good energy solution for Bermuda.

  8. Wtf says:

    I don’t get it, they are stopping it just as it’s getting more affordable. I smell a rat.

  9. Keep the incentives in place for 12 months and motivate the marketplace to install panels, create jobs and invest!!

  10. Truth is killin' me... says:

    The Government should keep this rebate going indefinitely. All they are doing is helping out Belco and their diesel driven generators. What kind of environmentally friendly Government is this!?

  11. Really ?!? says:

    Because the original budget was $500,000 and this was reached already. This is now anticipated to be over budget by $300,000 at the end of this fiscal year – and you want Government to continue giving money away – smh I just dont understand people.