Solar Energy Program Helps Wisconsin Residents

Some Wisconsin residents are combining Focus on Energy financial incentives with federal tax credits to substantially reduce their energy costs and help the environment by implementing renewable energy systems.

Guy Janssen, owner of a small business based in Wisconsin, contacted Focus on Energy, which eased the entire process of installing a solar hot water system– from the education to the paper work. “I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Focus on Energy’s Renewable Energy Program offered financial incentives on top of its technical expertise,” added Janssen. “The incentives available make a huge difference to small business owners like myself.” The cost of Janssen’s solar hot water system was $12,138; however, because of a $2,506 Cash-Back Reward from Focus on Energy and a $3,000 federal tax credit, the system is expected to pay for itself in less than six years. Focus on Energy is ready to share in the cost of installing or investigating renewable energy systems with financial incentives and grants. By doing so, it is the program’s goal to increase the number of renewable energy systems at work across Wisconsin. “Focus on Energy has a network of experts across the state and offers a variety of programs to help anyone plan, finance and install renewable energy systems,” said Don Wichert, program director for Focus on Energy’s Renewable Energy Program. “Because of this, a growing number of Wisconsin residents are using renewable energy, and not only for their businesses — some are incorporating it in their homes.” With the help of Focus on Energy, Janssen will integrate passive solar heat, a solar hot water system and a solar electric system into the new home he is building. He expects these systems to cover 100 percent of his electrical needs, allowing him to sell the excess electricity back to the utility company. The project’s cost is expected to pay for itself in approximately ten years. “For me, using renewable energy should be a no brainer,” said Janssen. “With all the financial and technical assistance available, I wish I would have done it earlier. There may be an upfront cost, but these systems are built to last a long time, and with energy costs always on the rise the payback periods are getting shorter.”
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