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Do Your Research

The idea of going solar may seem overwhelming at first, but the Consumer Guide to Solar for the South Carolina Homeowner contains easy-to-understand tips about:


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Consider Tax Credits

Tax credits for rooftop installations can help offset the cost of solar investments. However, Federal incentives for homeowners are scheduled to expire on December 31, 2016. Please consult your tax advisor.


Questions & Answers

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Since 2007, we’ve interconnected more than 350 customer’s solar systems – including homes, businesses, non-profits, and government entities. Our goal is to add more than 84 MW of new solar by the end of 2020.

Renewable energy is just one part of our generation mix. Along with nuclear, natural gas, scrubbed coal, and hydro, we’re ensuring that South Carolina’s growing energy needs can be met for decades to come with some of the cleanest energy sources and technologies available.

No. SCE&G does not install or finance solar panels. Visit the "Consult" tab of this webpage for a list of external sites that can help you find a professional solar installer.

Before you begin the process of installing solar, it’s important to make certain your home is energy efficient. SCE&G’s free Home Energy Check-up is optional and a great resource to ensure your home is energy efficient.

Home Energy Check-up
Not all homes are suitable for solar. Before you make the commitment to install, make sure that your home (roof structure, capacity, pitch, shading, etc.) is suitable for solar panels.
Yes. Community solar provides an alternative to installing panels at your home. Community solar allows electric service customers (homeowners or renters) the option to buy a portion of a solar farm without installing solar at your home. Community solar farms are centralized solar facilities where customers purchase panels and receive a pro rata share of the energy produced by the solar farm in the form of a bill credit. See the Residential Comparison Chart to determine if community solar is an option for you. The SCE&G Community Solar program will be available mid-2016. Residential Comparison Guide

While we are unable to offer assistance, we recommend working with a certified tax adviser to determine your eligibility.

Federal tax credits SC tax credits

The 30% federal tax credit available to eligible homeowners is scheduled to expire on December 31, 2016.

Federal tax credits

SCE&G offers residential customers a Performance Based Incentive (PBI) for solar generation along with its Net Energy Metering Program. The PBI comes in the form of a bill credit, and is in addition to any credits that offset usage under net energy metering. SCE&G does not offer cash rebates, upfront incentives, or financing for installing solar.

While the Solar Homeowners Guide addresses many of the factors that should be considered before, during and after a solar installation, it is not a comprehensive technical, design or installation guide. You should always consult with an experienced solar contractor to determine the right system for you.
For inquires pertaining to your solar system, contact your solar contractor. After reviewing this website, if you have additional questions specific to SCE&G’s solar programs, please email us at RenewableEnergy@scana.com or call us at 1-866-660-3705.

Check with your city and county to identify any zoning laws that may restrict where you can place solar panels on your home. In South Carolina, Homeowners' Associations (HOA) are allowed to restrict the placement of solar panels, so if you are part of a community governed by an HOA, check before signing a contract.

Homeowners will need to obtain any building or other local permits required before installation. Typically, your installer will assist you in obtaining permits and clearance from the city and county.

Choose the one that works best for you.

Rooftop or Community Solar?

Net Energy Metering (NEM)

For every kWh generated, you offset your current month's energy usage and any excess energy is carried forward to the next billing period to offset future usage.

Net Energy Metering Plus (NEM+)

For every kWh generated, you offset your current month's energy usage and any excess energy is carried forward to the next billing period to offset future usage. In addition, you receive a Performance Based Incentive (PBI) for all solar production.

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NEM & NEM+ Metering Configuration

Performance Based Incentive (PBI) Step Down Chart:

For Net Energy Metering Plus applicants, Performance Based Incentive (PBI) rates will be set based on the pricing available at each tier of total customer solar production. As participation (on a first-come-first-serve basis) increases, the PBI decreases. The first step in reserving a PBI is to complete and submit all required NEM Plus application forms on the Apply tab. Once reviewed and approved for program participation, you will receive an approval email. This approval email will indicate the PBI rate (i.e. $0.04, $0.03, $0.02, or $0.01) reserved for you.

Step Cumulative Capacity (MW) for all SCE&G Customers PBI per kWh Status
PBI fixed for a 10 year term.
PBI may be assigned to the customer's lessor or installer.
1 0 < cumulative capacity(s) 2.5 $0.04 Closed
2 2.5 < cumulative capacity(s) 5 $0.03 Open
3 5 < cumulative capacity(s) 7.5 $0.02 Pending
4 7.5 < cumulative capacity(s) 9 $0.01 Pending
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Community Solar — Coming Mid-2016

Community solar allows you (homeowners and renters) the option to buy a portion of a solar farm without installing solar at your home. Community solar arrays, sometimes referred to a solar farm or solar garden, are centralized SCE&G solar facilities with individual panels available for purchase by customers who receive credits on their electricity bill for the power produced.

SCE&G will offer community solar beginning in mid-2016. Customers will be able to purchase panels in a solar farm and receive a corresponding pro rata share of energy output through a monthly bill credit. Participants will receive a $0.10 per kWh for 20 years. The cost per panel will be comparable to the cost of installing rooftop solar.


Questions & Answers

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Net metering provides one way for customers who generate their own renewable electricity to reduce the power they need for their homes. Customers receive a credit that you can rollover for any excess energy that you generate.

There are many renewable options (solar, wind, hydro, even biomass), so there is no set price. The U.S. Department of Energy’s website is a good starting point. You can also use the PV Watts tool on NREL's website.

Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy PVWatts National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)

For residential customers, a Performance Based Incentive (PBI) on top of 1:1 Net Energy Metering was introduced. This incentive will start at $0.04 cents per kilowatt hour for all of the solar production output of a system.

In addition, residential customers and nonprofits will have the opportunity to participate in SCE&G-managed Community Solar farms starting next year. Community Solar is a very economical entry into solar power and provides customers an opportunity for off-site solar in many situations that they could not otherwise participate.

Renewable energy credits (RECs), also known as renewable energy certificates or green tags, represent the environmental attributes of the power produced from renewable energy projects. Source: U.S. Department of Energy Green Power Network

Performance-based incentives (PBI) are incentives that are paid based on the actual energy production of a solar system. Typically these are paid based on an energy ($/kWh) basis over a period of time. This is different from the approach where a one-time rebate is provided on a $/kW basis at the time the system is installed. Feed-in tariffs (FIT) are a common type of PBI.

SCE&G has proposed a “capacity-based, step-down” model, where we will offer $0.04 per kilowatt hour to customers until we reach the first capacity step of 2.5 MW. Once we reach that threshold (which would mean approximately 500 residential customers), we will step down the offering to $0.03 per kilowatt hour for new solar installations, and so on until we reach 9MW.

In this way, early adopters will receive the largest incentive and help stimulate the solar market in South Carolina. Once a customer has received approval for a PBI, it is fixed for a period of ten (10) years. NOTE: Customers have 180 days to complete the installation of their solar system and may request two (90 day) extensions.

The first step in reserving your PBI solar incentives is completing and submitting the Solar Energy Program Application. Once approved for program participation and PBI reservation, customers will receive a confirmation of their reservation.
Customers participating in SCE&G’s Distributed Energy Resource Programs will not be able to participate in Budget Billing because we cannot estimate the production of your solar system.

How to Find Solar Contractors

Always use a professional, licensed contractor to install your solar electric system. While SCE&G does not endorse or have any exclusive partnerships with contractors, here are some resources to consider:


Buying vs. Leasing

There are many factors to consider when deciding whether to buy or lease your system.

  • Buying a renewable energy system from an approved contractor or manufacturer means paying for it up front or financing with a bank loan. You own the entire solar energy system.
  • Leasing allows you to “rent” a renewable energy system for a set time period. Generally, you pay a fixed monthly rate no matter how much monthly energy the system produces.


SCE&G Equipment Requirements

Work with your installer to ensure the following equipment is included with your system:

on-off disconnect
AC Disconnect Switch

This must be:

  • Accessible to SCE&G personnel
  • Installed in close and visible proximity to the main meter
  • Must provide a visible air gap and be lockable in the off position
meter socket
Generation Metering

This must be:

  • Accessible to SCE&G personnel
  • Installed in close and visible proximity to the main meter

Questions & Answers

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SCE&G does not endorse or have any exclusive partnerships with solar installers and is not responsible for the installation process. When choosing an installer, it is very important and highly recommended that you speak with and obtain bids from a minimum of three contractors. Some resources to consider: South Carolina Solar Council South Carolina Solar Business Alliance North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP)
SCE&G does not offer installation services or provide oversight of the installation process; however, we conduct a field inspection to ensure that the installation meets our requirements. Selecting an experienced solar contractor is one of the most important steps in the overall installation process.
A Consumer Guide to Solar for the South Carolina Homeowner is an excellent resource to help educate customers on the overall process for installing rooftop solar, including selecting a contractor. Download the SC Consumer Guide to Solar
SCE&G does not offer financing options or installation services for solar systems.
The installer can advise you on the pros and cons of buying vs. leasing. If you prefer to own your solar installation, you should consult with your tax advisor to determine your eligibility for the federal and state tax credits.

Interconnection Process

To ensure a timely interconnection for your solar system, complete and submit all required forms to SCE&G for review and approval before you move forward with your solar installation.

  1. Complete Application Forms:

  2. Include Supporting Documents:

    • Single Line Diagram
    • Proof of Homeowner's Insurance
    • Customer's IRS Form W-9 (Download from IRS)
  3. Send completed documents to SCE&G:

    E-mail signed documents as PDF files to RenewableEnergy@scana.com or mail them with your interconnection fee to the address below

  4. Mail your $100 interconnection fee to:

SCE&G - Renewable Energy Team
220 Operation Way
Mail Code: C106
Cayce, SC 29033


If you have any questions, email or call SCE&G at 1-866-660-3705.


Questions & Answers

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Net Energy Metering and Net Energy Metering Plus customers who interconnect on or after January 1, 2015 are eligible to receive an annual bill credit if their solar generation exceeds their usage. The value of any bill credit/payment you receive could be treated as income. Consult with your tax advisor for more information.
Yes, you will receive an auto-response email confirming receipt of your documents. We will contact you as we start to review your application.
Within 15 business days from receipt of your completed application forms and fee, you can expect to receive approval from SCE&G. We will contact you by e-mail or standard mail to confirm approval.
It is important that you wait for approval from SCE&G to ensure your system plans adhere to system requirements for the interconnection process. If you are also applying for a PBI reservation, we will be able to confirm your participation.

Make Sure You Are Ready

Installing solar is a big decision. Make sure you have done your research by reviewing the information on the previous tabs of this web page and consulting with a professional contractor.

The Installation Process - What to Expect

  1. Receive Approval from SCE&G

    After you receive approval from SCE&G, move forward with your installation.

  2. Local Inspection

    After installation, contact your local inspection authority to have the installation inspected.

  3. Utility Inspection

    Once SCE&G receives the release from the local inspection authority, a utility inspection will be performed. Our inspection will verify the AC disconnect switch and extra meter socket (see requirements on "Consult" tab).

  4. Bi-directional Meter Installed

    SCE&G will install a bi-directional meter in the extra meter socket you provide.

  5. Turn on your System


If you have any questions, email or call SCE&G at 1-866-660-3705.


Questions & Answers

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You can move forward with your solar installation after you receive a signed interconnection agreement and approval letter from SCE&G.
It is important that you wait for approval from SCE&G to ensure your system plans adhere to system requirements for the interconnection process. If you are also applying for a PBI reservation, we will be able to confirm your participation.
There are many variables that may impact how long it will take to install your solar system; however, timing will be dependent on your contractor’s schedule and availability. Typically speaking, it takes about 3 days to actually install solar panels; however, the overall process may take 3 to 6 months.
Proper maintenance of your system will keep it running smoothly. You should carefully review the maintenance instructions shown in the system manual with your system provider.
The standard meter cannot differentiate between incoming and outgoing energy. Without the bi-directional meter, you could be charged for any energy your solar panels generate that is sent back to SCE&G.