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Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States

Pricing CLEAN Contracts for Solar PV in the U.S.

| Written by John Farrell | 2 Comments | Updated on Aug 11, 2011 The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at

What would happen if the U.S. adopted the world’s flagship solar energy policy – a feed-in tariff?  This policy is responsible for three-quarters of the world’s solar power capacity and offers the simplest mechanism for expanding production of solar power and other renewable energy.

Pricing CLEAN Contracts for Solar PV in the U.S.explores how such a policy (also known as CLEAN contracts) would be priced in the U.S. market, translating the world-leading German program to America.  The report, authored by ILSR senior researcher John Farrell, accounts for the much greater solar resource in the U.S. and examines the price utilities would have to pay to obtain the most solar, most affordably.

The report examines what these prices would be with existing federal incentives and without, exploring the price states could pay to maximize their solar power potential.

CLEAN Rate for < 30 kW Rooftop Solar PV @ $3.50/W – ITC and depreciation

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About John Farrell

John Farrell directs the Energy Self-Reliant States and Communities program at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and he focuses on energy policy developments that best expand the benefits of local ownership and dispersed generation of renewable energy. More

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  • 2flit

    I would like to see the information that supports an installed cost for systems 30kW at $3.50/watt ;;; or even at the median system size point of 15kW? I assume thiat this is a pre-ITC price level that you refer to?
    Single Family Residential system today are usually around 4kW and installed costs are about $5/watt.
    Is the $3.50/wtt installed price some future goal for PV systempricing?

  • jfarrell

    $3.50 per Watt is a modestly forward-looking price point for <30 kW solar in the U.S., but Germany is already installing at $3.40 per Watt for modest-sized systems:

    You are correct that I’m referring to pre-incentive prices.