Nebraska ranks 48th among all states in number of solar panel systems installed with only 29, according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. In a state with more than 200 days of sunshine a year, this state has untapped potential for solar. If Nebraska’s considerable use of other renewable energy sources can pave the way for strong solar policies and incentives, the state can see solar energy take off. Read on to learn about companies, policies and resources that promote Nebraska solar power.

Nebraska’s Solar
Report Card

Grade
Methodology

To determine a grade for each state, our researchers and solar experts analyzed data on crucial solar-advancement criteria from the following sources:

We determined a rank from 1 to 10 for each state in each category. We then combined the scores with the following weights and assigned an overall grade for each state. Our goal is to encourage those considering solar for their homes to get a basic understanding of solar potential in their areas and discover the best opportunities for clean energy available.

Incentives & Rebates, 40%

Electricity Rate, 15%

Renewable Energy Policy, 30%

Interconnection Ease, 5%

Photovoltaic Potential, 10%

How Much Does Electricity Cost in Nebraska?

Nebraska residents pay on average $9.18/kWh, lower than the national average, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Electricity consumption ranks among the highest in the nations thanks to its major food processing and chemical manufacturing industry. EIA notes that, while approximately 85 percent of net electricity generation came from coal and nuclear power, more than 10 percent was generated by renewables in 2015. Wind power is the most used renewable energy source in the state. Despite solar having great potential in Nebraska, the state lacks solar development.

Cost of Residential Electricity

Data from U.S. Energy Information Administration
*as of Q3 2015

Nebraska Solar Energy:
Library of Resources

Nebraska’s Green Policies & Incentives

Nebraska has only 0.28 MWs of solar capacity installed according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. It follows then that the state is not considered solar-friendly, with few solar incentives and tax exemptions. Nebraska also lacks a renewable energy portfolio standard, giving utilities little incentive to purse the use of renewable energy. Nevertheless, the state has strong potential for solar and panels on homes are popping up across the state. Nebraskans are taking advantage of net the metering policy, renewable energy tax credits, and a variety of state and utility solar incentives.

REBATES/INCENTIVES

Dollar and Energy Savings Loans:

The Nebraska Energy Office has a loan program for renewable energy projects that allows residential property owners to receive up to $250,000 to install PV systems. Under this program, commercial property owners can borrow up to $250,000. Interest rates are 2.5 to 5 percent, depending on the nature of the energy system. Property owners have up to 15 years to repay the loan.

Lincoln Electric System – Renewable Energy Rebate:

This rebate allows those who install PV systems on their property to receive a one-time payment. The amount received depends on the system’s efficiency, with Southern-facing fixed solar systems receiving $375/kW-DC and Western-facing fixed solar systems receiving $475/kW-DC. Eligible systems must not exceed 100 kW.

None for residential specifically.

None for commercial specifically.

POLICIES

Interconnection Guidelines:

Since May 2009, Nebraska law has mandated that property owners with PV systems be allowed to connect to the energy grid, provided that they pay for an external disconnection switch that isolates the system from the grid.

Net Metering:

Owners of energy generating systems of up to 25 kW receive credits from their utility company under this measure. Credits are issued based on utility companies’ avoided-cost rate.

Solar and Wind Easements:

Under this law, Nebraska requires that those with solar and wind energy generating systems have adequate access to the sunlight and wind the systems need to operate. Local governments may create zoning regulations in order to accommodate property owners with these devices.

None for residential specifically.

None for commercial specifically.

TAX CREDITS

None for residential/commercial specifically.

Renewable Energy Tax Credit:

Nebraska allows homeowners with PV systems to receive a tax credit of $0.0005/kWh, which can be earned for ten years.

Renewable Energy Tax Credit:

Commercial, agricultural, and industrial property owners can receive a tax credit of $50,000 for the energy their PV system generates. This tax credit can be received for ten years after installation.

TAX EXEMPTIONS

Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Community Renewable Energy Projects:

The sale, lease, or rental of personal property for use in a community-based energy development project is exempt from the sales and use tax imposed on the gross receipts.

None for residential specifically.

Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy Property:

A sales tax exemption is available to property owners who install solar or wind energy generating systems on their property. Investment must exceed $20,000,000.

Nebraska Companies, Contractors & Installers

Dixon Power Systems

Dixon Power Systems specializes in custom designed solar and wind turbine systems for residential, recreational, small business, agricultural, emergency and field applications. Regularly hosts free solar energy seminars.

Where it operatesLincoln

Year of opening2005

Nebraska Wind and Solar

Nebraska Wind and Solar specializes in residential and commercial PV solar and small wind power systems, including designing and building ¨net zero¨ homes that generate revenues for homeowners by selling power to the grid.

Where it operatesLincoln

Year of opening2004

SolarCon

SolarCon specializes in affordable, sustainable renewable energy systems design, engineering, installation, maintenance and project development that benefits individuals and communities. Focus is on building systems that maximize returns for clients and investing partners.

Where it operatesOmaha

Year of opening2013

Solar Heat & Electric

Solar Heat and Electric designs and installs grid-connected and off-grid solar PV and heating systems according to customer-specified budgets and needs. Handles all paperwork and offers data monitoring with no hidden fees or charges.

Where it operatesOmaha

Year of opening1983

Transduction Technologies

A progressive, small engineering company, Transduction Technologies is an Omaha Certified Tier 1 Emerging Small Business that employs the latest in advanced energy and building methods and technology in designing, engineering and constructing residential and commercial PV systems.

Where it operatesOmaha

Year of opening2011

Additional Solar Resources

Green Omaha Coalition

Discover the Green Omaha Coalition, promoting a ¨greener¨ Omaha via collaboration, education and advocacy, including helping foster growth of residential and community solar energy installations and projects.

Nebraska Department of Energy

Find out more about solar energy generation in Nebraska with this definitive source for energy data, policies, government news and information state-wide and beyond.

Nebraska Solar Energy Society

Housed at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, represents those interested in studying and applying the principles of solar energy generation and its applications throughout society. Provides educational programs to members, the public and carries out educational outreach programs with schools.

Nebraskans for Solar

Explore a comprehensive range of information on solar in the state, from a directory of solar businesses to the latest news and updates regarding local, state and federal legislation, policies and programs.

DSIRE

Explore this comprehensive source of information regarding U.S., state and local solar policies and programs from this online database maintained by the North Carolina Clean Energy Center.

U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)

Find data and information compiled by the EIA that serves as an essential resource for researchers and the public.

Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)

Find valuable information resource for solar energy in the U.S. The leading solar energy industry trade association in the country, SEIA is a source of news, information, opinions, research and statistics.