This month, under direction from the New York State Governor’s office, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and PSEG Long Island (now operating Long Island Power Authority’s electric system) merged their solar incentive programs under one umbrella: the NY-Sun Incentive Program. The program, funded by the $1 billion NY-Sun initiative, provides financial support for solar projects using a Megawatt block system approach that is responsive to changing market conditions, and allows the solar market in each region of the state to grow at its own pace.
Consolidating the established NYSERDA and PSEGLI programs under a single program umbrella was no small feat. NYSERDA began accepting solar incentive applications using PowerClerk® in 2007, and Long Island Power Authority followed in 2011 with its own unique PowerClerk implementation. Both programs have expanded exponentially over the years, with NYSERDA growing from a few hundred complete applications in 2007, to more than 5,000 in 2013.
Clean Power Research was pleased to support the new NY-Sun Incentive Program, merging the former NYSERDA and PSEGLI incentive application processes within PowerClerk in a few months. So far this year, the two programs have received more than 5,000 applications, and with the new incentive program block that just opened, we expect this pace to continue.
One goal of the NY-Sun Incentive Program is to make information about the progress of the initiative readily available to the public. To reach this goal, the NY-Sun incentive Program created a new block dashboard using information collected in PowerClerk during the incentive application process. Called the MW Block Dashboard, this online tool shows the real-time progress in the current blocks, provides incentive levels and MW targets for subsequent blocks, and provides details on the progress towards the overall NY-Sun Statewide PV initiative installed capacity goal of 3GW.
NYSERDA has also made its database of nearly 10,000 completed solar projects available to the public via Open NY, the State’s open data portal. The Solar PV Incentive Program database—which also consists of data captured and stored in PowerClerk during the incentive application process—contains detailed information about the system specifications and location of each solar project. This information is immensely useful for the solar industry to track the growth of solar and market share, and identify where there is potential for growth.
PowerClerk has not only enabled NYSERDA and PSEGLI to efficiently administer incentives in New York, it has collected and stored incentive application information in a way that makes it possible to keep the public well informed on the progress and performance of state incentive programs.
New York has long been a pioneer in using software-as-a-service systems for program administration, and has always sought ways to transparently provide data back to its citizens, industry and local government. The NY-Sun Incentive Program and the NY Solar PV Incentive program database are just the latest examples of their ongoing efforts.