What is Santee Cooper Solar Share?

Santee Cooper is offering customers the opportunity to subscribe to a share of the capacity at the Colleton Solar Farm. Santee Cooper Solar Share allows customers to own solar output without having to install a rooftop solar electric system at their home or business. Customers will use their share’s output each month to offset the total electricity they need to run their home or business.

How does Santee Cooper Solar Share work?

Customers can subscribe to the Colleton Solar Farm in 1-kilowatt (kW) increments through an upfront payment. For their subscription, customers will receive a proportional share of the energy produced by the solar farm through Dec. 20, 2033, which they’ll see on their bills in the form of solar energy credits. Because customers are subscribing to a portion of the output of the Colleton Solar Farm, and in turn the energy that portion generates, the solar energy credits on their bills will differ monthly depending on how much solar power is generated that month.

Why should a customer consider community solar?

Santee Cooper Solar Share is ideal for customers who:

  • Rent
  • Own a condominium or townhouse
  • Have homeowners associations that don’t allow rooftop solar
  • Don’t get enough sun on their roofs or their homes aren’t situated in a way that rooftop solar would be cost effective
  • Have a roof that cannot support a rooftop solar installation
  • Don’t want the maintenance and upkeep of rooftop solar
How long will a subscription to the solar farm last?

The subscription lasts through Dec. 20, 2033.

How much does it cost?

Solar Share is sold in 1-kW increments, at $1.82 per watt with a $1.40 per watt Santee Cooper rebate and a 6 kW cap for rebates. (The amount per watt and the rebate amount will be reviewed each year.) The cost after rebate up to 6kW is:

  • 1 kW: $420
  • 2 kW: $840
  • 3 kW: $1,260
  • 4 kW: $1,680
  • 5 kW: $2,100
  • 6 kW: $2,520
How much of a rebate will customers receive from Santee Cooper?

Solar Share costs $1.82 per watt and Santee Cooper’s rebate amount is $1.40 per watt. Solar Share is sold per kW, which equates to a rebate amount of $1,400 per kW. There is a 6 kW cap for rebates. (The amount per watt and the rebate amount will be reviewed each year.)

How long will it take for a subscription to pay for itself?

After Santee Cooper’s rebate and using the assumptions below, based on the average monthly consumption of 1,300 kWh for an average residential customer, the subscription will pay for itself in:

  • 1kW: 5 years
  • 2 kW: 4.4 years
  • 3 kW: 4.5 years
  • 4 kW: 4.9 years
  • 5 kW: 5.3 years
  • 6 kW: 5.9 years
After Santee Cooper’s rebate and using the assumptions below, based on the average monthly consumption of 2,200 kWh for an average residential customer, the subscription will pay for itself in:

  • 1kW: 5 years
  • 2 kW: 4.3 years
  • 3 kW: 4.2 years
  • 4 kW: 4.2 years
  • 5 kW: 4.4 years
  • 6 kW: 4.6 years

Payback time is based on these assumptions and could change.

Assumptions

  • Colleton Solar Farm subscription price of $1.82/watt.
  • Community Solar rebates are capped at 6 kW of capacity.
  • Determination of excess consumption based on hourly profiles/ratios created using Colleton Solar Farm output (Avg. 2014-2015) and residential load survey consumption data from 2014.
  • Assumes 17 years ownership beginning in 2017.
  • Payback times will vary by customer and depend on your particular energy consumption, weather and other considerations.
  • Potential income tax implications have not been considered. Participants should consult a tax expert for guidance.
Can Santee Cooper customers finance Solar Share?

At this time, Solar Share customers are not eligible for Santee Cooper’s low-interest loans.

What happens when the sun isn’t shining?

During the months when there is less sunshine the Colleton Solar Farm will generate less power, which will reduce the credit for your solar energy during that time period.

What is a standby fee and why is it needed?

As of April 1, all new Santee Cooper solar customers will be charged a Distributed Generation Rider. The rider includes a standby fee for residential customers of $4.40 per kW per month, or $17.60 a month for a 4 kW system. For commercial customers, the rider includes a standby fee of $4.70 per kW per month, or $18.80 a month for a 4 kW system.

That standby fee is necessary to recover fixed costs, such as maintenance of generation, transmission and distribution systems, to serve solar customers that wouldn’t otherwise be collected, to ensure those fixed costs are not shifted to non-solar customers

What should I expect to see on my bill?

Your bill will show a solar energy credit that’s equal to the energy produced by your share of the solar farm.

What happens if I move?

If you move within Santee Cooper’s direct-serve territory, you can take your Solar Share with you. If you move outside of Santee Cooper’s direct-serve territory, Santee Cooper may initiate a Subscription Buyout process. A customer may not request Santee Cooper to repurchase its subscription under any conditions other than a change in the customer’s service address.

How quickly will I receive my rebate?

Your rebate will be applied before you pay for your subscription.

How is Solar Share different from Green Power?

With Solar Share, customers subscribe to the solar farm’s capacity and receive a share of the overall output at the Colleton Solar Farm that is credited against their monthly energy consumption. In 4 to 6 years and depending on an individual customer’s energy habits and other assumptions, those monthly Santee Cooper savings could cover the customer’s subscription cost, leading to overall electric cost savings over the life of the subscription.

With Green Power, customers buy 100 kWh blocks of landfill gas, solar and wind energy, but they are not subscribed to a portion of the generating capacity. They are paying a monthly premium of $3 per 100 kWh block for using Green Power, which costs more to produce, and Green Power customers are supporting other renewable projects in the state. All proceeds from Green Power sales are used for new renewable power projects.

Who should I contact for more information?

You can email us at solar@santeecooper.com.

Assumptions

  • Colleton Solar Farm subscription price of $1.82/watt.
  • Community Solar rebates are capped at 6 kW of capacity.
  • Determination of excess consumption based on hourly profiles/ratios created using Colleton Solar Farm output (Avg. 2014-2015) and residential load survey consumption data from 2014.
  • Assumes 17 years ownership beginning in 2017.
  • Payback times will vary by customer and depend on your particular energy consumption, weather and other considerations.
  • Potential income tax implications have not been considered. Participants should consult a tax expert for guidance.