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Michigan EARP for Consumers Energy Customers

The Experimental Advanced Renewable Program (EARP) is an incentive program provided by Consumers Energy for their residential and business customers who purchase and install a solar photovoltaic system. Customers must apply during the open application period and then be selected to participate.

The EARP program encourages Consumers Energy electric customers to purchase and install solar photovoltaic (PV) systems at their home or business by offering a financial incentives to help offset the out-of-pocket costs. In return, Consumers Energy receives the Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) generated by this renewable technology.

Dovetail has worked with a number of clients to apply for and receive EARP incentives. The EARP  program combined with  federal tax credits help make solar affordable. The program consists of an ongoing Feed-In-Tariff (FIT) type payment by Consumers for each kWh generated by the solar system for 15 years. The rate paid is set for each program phase.

Program Incentives

EARP generally issues a new Solicitation for Applications each quarter. Each solicitation is referred to as a numbered  "Phase xx". The solicitation phase is for either residential or non-residential projects. The amount of capacity solicited varies by phase as well as the incentive amount.  Consumers Energy is now accepting residential applications.

Solicitation Windows  
Non-Residential and Residential Solicitation Windows:

Phase
No.


Year


Quarter


For

Solicitation
Opens

Application
Due Date

Firm-Offer Price ($/kWh)

16

2014

1

Residential

01/02/2014

02/05/2014

0.243

17

2014

2

Non-Residential

04/01/2014

05/07/2014

0.199

18

2014

2

Residential

04/01/2014

05/07/2014

0.243

If the total capacity of all generating systems applying for participation in a phase exceeds the amount of capacity to be awarded, Consumers Energy will select applications at random from all qualifying applications submitted.

Sample Phase 18 Residential Incentive:
A qualifying 6,100 watt solar system would receive ongoing EARP payments of approximately $1,700 per year ($25,300 over 15 years). Note that this works as a Feed-In-Tariff (FIT), so the customer receives this amount as a credit against their regular utility electric bill. The solar system is connected In front of their regular utility meter, rather than behind it as is typical for net metering.

If you have questions, please contact us, or you can contact the EARP program coordinator at Consumers Energy via email.

See EARP for additional information on this incentive program.
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