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Clear info on home solar power rebates, tax credits, and other benefits

2017 Policy Grade

F

Avg. Yearly Savings

$686

Congratulations! You've found the ultimate guide to going solar in Mississippi

2017 Policy Grade

F

Avg. Savings/year

$686

Welcome to the 2017 Mississippi solar power information page

Note: The numbers above are just estimates for a 5kW solar system, and your home is unique. The best way to know exactly how much money solar power can save you is to connect with one of our partners nearby. A friendly solar expert we trust will give you a buzz and help you craft a personal plan to get the absolute most out of a solar power system for your home. It's 100% free (yes, that’s right, 100% free) and you aren't obligated to buy anything.

Between the Mississippi river delta and the gulf coast, the state of Mississippi hosts some very unique places, not to mention being the birthplace of the Delta blues and a center of the civil rights movement. Even with all of its history and natural beauty, Mississippi has been slow to get on the solar energy train.

Legislators in Jackson haven’t really done anything of note to help promote solar. While there was a really nice 2013 state solar tax credit bill (HB 793) that would have provided statewide retroactive tax credits to homeowners who installed solar panels on or after July 1, 2010, it died in committee. We need more than that from lawmakers in Jackson.

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Questions? Our network of solar experts are on call to assist you. Simply sign up for personalized assistance on our special solar deals page. You can get discounted on-grid pricing as low as $4,000/kW! This is paired with the Mississippi solar incentives you see below.

Your guide to going solar in Mississippi

We've designed this page to be a complete guide to the complicated and sometimes confusing process of installing solar panels on a home in Mississippi. Since there's a lot of important information to consider, we've separated the page into sections to help you find what you are looking for. If you find this page useful, please share it with someone who might also find it interesting!

The Solar Strategy section is all about the various financial options you have in Mississippi. We've created a tool that asks you a few questions about what you hope to get out of a solar purchase and recommends whether you should pursue a solar lease, loan, or outright purchase. Then, we give you a detailed picture of how each could work for you.

The Policy Information section contains all of our latest research on the rules set by the state legislature and public utilities commission that determines how easy it is to go solar in Mississippi. These policies and rules govern everything from renewable energy mandates to whether you get paid retail or wholesale rates for the extra energy your system produces, and can have a huge effect on the viability of solar.

Finally, the Solar Incentives section lists all of the available financial benefits available to homeowners who go solar. This section includes information about money-back rebates and grants, tax credits, and tax exemptions. If you're looking for what Mississippi is doing to make solar more affordable for its citizens, you'll find it here.

Click any of the boxes below to go to that section of the page, or scroll down to read the page in order.

Your Solar Strategy in Mississippi

Figuring out the best way to go solar in Mississippi can be a little daunting. From loans and leases to power-purchase agreements, there are a lot of options out there. To help you pick the one that might be best, we've created the handy decision tool below.

We'll ask you a few simple questions about you and your home. Once you're done, we'll recommend a good option. Further down this page, we provide cost estimates and example return-on-investment calculations for all the various options:

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Compare the Return of Different Solar Investments in Mississippi

The chart above shows the 25-year returns for an investment in solar whether you choose to purchase a system with cash or pay over time with a loan. Since Mississippi doesn't have an RPS, the state isn't quite financially right for leasing yet, so we included two different sizes of solar loans—one for people with a lot of equity (or credit), and one for people with just a little.

What Mississippi does have, though, is sunshine and medium-high electricity prices. That means solar makes more financial sense here than in some other states. It also means there are a few good ways to go solar here and make money.

As you can see from the chart, the purchase option leads to the highest dollar-amount returns over time, but it also requires a big up-front investment. A better option is to take a home equity line of credit (HELOC). You'll put $0 down and end up with a big, big tax break at the end of the year.

Your loan payments over 15 years will be more than your electric bill savings, but you'll still come out thousands of dollars ahead by the end of your panels' 25-year warranty, with the potential to continue the savings long into the future. We've included examples for two sizes of solar systems with loans.

Read on to find out more about each option.

Net Present Value of Solar in Mississippi

“Net Present What?!” Don’t panic, this isn’t an economics test. NPV is just a tool used to compare investments. Basically, it asks, “if you had X dollars to invest, which investment would get you the best return?” It relies on the idea that getting a return on your investment sooner is better than later, because you can reinvest your early profits and keep the gain train going.

We compare an investment in solar to a “what-if” investment in a Standard & Poor’s (S&P) 500 stock index fund, which has seen growth of about 7% per year over the past 25 years. We use the cost of solar in Mississippi and ask “how much better or worse (in 2017 dollars) is an investment in solar than stocks?” Here's what we found for the most popular ways of going solar in Mississippi:

Well, it could be worse, but it ain't pretty. No matter how you pay for solar in Mississippi, you'd do better putting your money in stocks. That's because of a few factors; namely, Mississippi has low electricity prices and utilities here don't have to pay you for the energy your solar panels generate. Here's some more about how we got these numbers:

Solar Loan NPV: -$249

As we’re fond of saying, taking a loan for solar is a no-brainer, because it’s like agreeing to pay over time for something that is also making you money, plus you get 30% of the loan value as a tax credit (cash in your pocket) after making payments for only 1 year. In the case of Mississippi, a loan is your best bet to see a good return on your solar investment. $249 is a very small difference in NPV compared to the stock market, so if you can get a HELOC or solar loan, you should go for it. Read more about solar loans below

Solar Purchase NPV: -$4,080

A solar purchase in Mississippi has a negative NPV because electricity prices here are so cheap and you don't get paid anything for extra solar energy you send back to the grid. You're much better off with a solar loan, unless you absolutely need to put gobs of money into an asset.Read more about solar purchases below.

green square  Buying Solar in Mississippi

Paying up front used to be the only way to get panels on your roof, and it's still the option that allows you the most control. But it isn't the best option from a percentage return on investment standpoint—that award goes to the solar loan option.

Still, an outright purchase means you own the system from day one and reap the benefits. You get the 30% Federal solar tax credit and electricity savings to bring your first-year costs way down. In our example, you put down $20,000, but by the end of year 1, incentives and energy savings will erase a bunch of it. Over 25 years, your system will have produced more than $10,000 in income. That's a pretty good deal, but it can't quite compete with an elternative investment in the stock market. Check out the NPV:

Here’s how the numbers work for a Mississippi solar purchase of a 5-kW rooftop solar system:

  • Installing a typical 5-kW solar system should start at about $20,000.
  • The Feds calculate their 30% tax credit based on actual out of pocket costs, so you'll get $6,000 back as a tax credit, for a new price (after year 1) of $14,000. Note: you can take the credit over as many years as necessary if you don't owe $6,000 in Federal taxes this year.
  • Next, you'll subtract your first-year energy savings, which will add up to about $686, bringing your cost after the first year to $13,314. Those savings will continue for the life of your system, and will only get bigger over time, considering that utility companies raise their rates 3.5% annually on average.
  • By the time your system pays itself back in year 16, you’ll be seeing over $1,000 per year in savings until the end of your 25-year warranty.
  • When all is said and done, our estimate shows a total net profit of $10,301, with an internal rate of return of 4.6%. That's not bad, but not quite as good as a 25-year investment in the stock market. Mississippi solar isn't the best investment option—but it is a way to make a little money while doing good for the environment.
  • On top of those returns, your home's value just increased by just about $18,000, too (your expected annual electricity savings over 20 years)!
  • And speaking of doing good for the environment... your system will create some green for the earth by not using electricity from fossil-fuels. In fact, the energy you’re not using has the carbon equivalent of planting 104 trees a year, every year your solar power system is humming.
Keep in mind, the numbers above are based on an average home in Mississippi. If you're ready for a custom quote for a solar panel system, our network of experts are on call to assist you. Simply sign up for personalized assistance on our special solar deals page.

orange square  Solar Loans in Mississippi

Usually, this is where we tell you that taking a loan for solar panels is a no-brainer, because it means investing in an income-generating asset. And technically, that's true in Mississippi, too. It's just not a sure-thing like it is in other states, because Mississippi has low electricity prices, and the savings aren't as great as in other states.

As you can see from the chart above, you'll start out with a big windfall, because with a loan, you're not putting any money down, and you get the Federal 30% tax credit for the whole installed cost of your system. Then, over the 15-year repayment term of your loan, you'll be spending more than you're saving in electricity costs, to the tune of about $1,000 per year until you pay the loan off.

After that, though you'll save over $1,000 per year in electricity costs from your paid-for solar panels, and by the end of the system's 25-year warranty, you'll have $3,672 in profits, which is about equal to investing in stocks.

Here’s how the numbers pencil out for a Mississippi solar purchase with a solar loan:

  • Installing a typical 5-kW solar system should start at about $20,000. That's how big your loan will need to be to cover it.
  • The electricity you'll save in the first year of operation would have cost $686, but your loan payments will total $1,775, for a net cost of $1,089, or about $90.75 per month.
  • That's not so bad when you consider your tax savings for the year will be $6,000! You'll come out over $4,900 ahead in year 1, which should help ease the burden of loan payments for a few years, at least.
  • When your loan’s paid off after year 15, you’ll start see over $1,000 per year in savings until the end of your system’s life.
  • At the end of your 25-year panel warranty, you'll be in black by $3,672. That's a great return for a $0-down investment!
  • Finally, the environmental benefits might make you smile, too. Operating your system will take as much carbon out of the air as planting 104 trees every year!
Keep in mind, the numbers above are based on an average home in Mississippi. If you're ready for a custom quote for a solar loan, our network of experts are on call to assist you. Simply sign up for personalized assistance on our special solar deals page.

blue square  Small Rooftop Systems in Mississippi

Let's say you don't have a ton of extra cash laying around, but you do have a bit of equity in your home. Can you get solar panels? YES! Is it a good idea in Mississippi? That depends on what you're in it for...

See, solar saves you money on your electric bill, but in Mississippi, we only pay $.11 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity, which means solar saves you less money than in states with high electricity costs. You'll still save a little over the long-term with solar, but it won't be better than an alternative investment.

Here are the factors we'll look at for this example:

  • A 2-kW rooftop system that will cost around $9,600 installed.
  • A HELOC for that amount with a 10-year payback at 4% interest.

Just like with a big system, you don’t have to put any money down, but you still get the big federal tax credit for buying solar. You'll get the 30% of your solar costs back as a tax credit and the energy bill savings will start right away. Your loan payments will be about $97 per month while your energy bill savings will be about $23—a difference of $74. Basically, for the cost of cable TV service, you do your part to save the planet from carbon pollution, and make a little money later in your life, too.

Here’s how the numbers pencil out for a Mississippi solar purchase with a small rooftop solar system:

  • Installing a typical 2-kW solar system should cost about $9,600. Your loan should be for this amount.
  • The electricity you'll save in the first year of operation would have cost $275, while your loan payments will cost $1,166.
  • At the end of the year, the Federal government will give you a tax credit of 30% of the cost of your system. That's $2,880 that you won't owe this year, and after the net cost of the loan, it means a first-year proft of $1,988. You can take the tax credit over as many years as necessary if you don't owe that much in federal taxes this year.
  • When your loan’s paid off after year 10, you’ll see over $360 per year in savings until the end of your system’s life.
  • At the end of your system's 25-year warranty, you'll see a small profit; we estimate $937, which isnt huge, but it's better than breaking even!
  • Your system will remove as much carbon from the air as planting 42 trees per year, which is a pretty great thing, we'd say.
Keep in mind, the numbers above are based on an average home in Mississippi. If you're ready for a custom quote for a solar loan, our network of experts are on call to assist you. Simply sign up for personalized assistance on our special solar deals page.

Mississippi Solar Policy Information

Ever wonder why solar seems to be everywhere in some states, but not in others? We did too.

State legislatures and public utilities commissions can enact rules to make solar power accessible for everyone. Favorable rules explain why some of the cloudiest states—New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, are doing so well with solar, and yet some of those with the most natural solar resources—like Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida—are doing so poorly.

Below is important information about the public policy, rules, and economic reasons that affect your ability to go solar here in Mississippi:

RPS

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Renewable Portfolio Standard grade

A Renewables Portfolio Standard (“RPS”) requires utilities in the state to eventually source at least a certain percentage of their electricity from clean, renewable sources like solar panels. Mississippi is without an RPS, and it shows in the state’s complete lack of incentives for solar.

An RPS is critical to strong renewable energy policy. Utility companies aren't really all that gung-ho about you producing your own power. After all, it costs them money when you use less of their electricity. They also don’t naturally want to give you big payments for energy you're feeding back into the grid. The main reason the utilities are aiding the transition to lower electric bills and offering incentives to put solar on roofs is because the state forces them to. Without an RPS, Mississippi is missing opportunities to help homeowners take advantage of clean, reliable solar power.

What's an RPS? Your state legislature paves the way for strong solar energy incentives to flourish by setting standards for renewable energy generation within their territories. Those standards are called the state’s renewable portfolio standard (RPS). If utility companies do not meet these standards, they must pay alternative compliance fees directly to the state. Many utilities then determine the best ways to source their energy from renewable sources that are less expensive than this fee.

An RPS is a mandate that says "Hey utilities! Y'all now have to make a certain percentage of your electricity from renewable sources. If not, you'll have to pay us huge fines." The consequences are good, because utilities usually try to meet these RPS standards by creating solar power incentives for you, the homeowner. Read more about Renewable Portfolio Standards.

RPS solar carve out

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Solar Carve-out grade

The best states for solar mandate that a certain percentage of the RPS comes directly from solar energy. Without a mandatory RPS in Mississippi, this is another area that falls short. If an RPS contains specific carve-outs for clean and efficient technologies like solar panels, or mandates for the environmentally necessary increases in distributed generation, you see even stronger incentives for residential solar power.

What's a solar set aside? A solar set aside guarantees a specific portion of the overall renewable energy mix generated comes from the sun. For those states with progressive standards, high alternative compliance payments, and clear solar carve outs, the faster those areas become ripe for solar.

Some states have higher alternative compliance fees than others, and some states have more progressive alternative energy standards and deadlines than others do.

For instance, New Jersey has an overall RPS of 22.5% by the year 2021. That requires local utilities to source 22.5% of their energy mix from renewable sources by the year 2021. Pretty good. However, New Jersey also has a specific solar set aside of 4.1% by 2028. That’s the type of firm commitment which really gets the industry rolling forward. No wonder why New Jersey is one of the hottest solar markets right now!

Mississippi Electricity Prices

$0.11/kwh

Grade: D

Mississippi's Electricity cost grade

Mississippians currently pay about 11 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity. That’s about a penny cheaper than the national average. We know you like paying less now, but that’s only until the long-term costs kick in. Most electricity is currently produced by burning fossil fuels. All that earth-killing oil and coal may still be relatively easy on your wallet, but the long-term costs associated with fossil fuels are going to far outweigh those monthly bill savings. When new regulations that consider all those long-term costs really start to kick in, monthly electricity bills are going to inevitably rise as well. When that happens, you’ll be patting yourself on the back for having already switched over to clean efficient solar energy!

Why are electricity prices so important? Because that is what solar power is directly competing against. The cost to produce power with solar is relatively constant (of course how much sun hits your area has an effect), so if you are paying $0.40 per watt for power, then you make FOUR TIMES AS MUCH as the guy or girl paying $0.10 per watt electricity.

The caveat here is that if the $0.10 per watt person has a HUGE rebate, they may be better off than the $0.40 per watt person. Because of that, states without any renewable standards tend to be heavily reliant on cheap coal for electricity, and also have very low electricity prices. When electricity prices are artificially low, that hinders the ability of solar energy to achieve meaningful payback in the state.

Mississippi Net Metering

D

Grade: D

Mississippi's Net Metering grade

Net Metering requires your utility to monitor how much energy your solar power system produces and how much energy you actually consume, and make sure you get credit for the surplus.

Mississippi is one of only six states in the nation without statewide net metering standards in place. Net metering remains completely at the discretion of the utility companies. That’s a raw deal for Mississippi homeowners, unless you happen to live in the TVA service area, it might be difficult to figure out how your panels will affect your electricity bill.

Mississippi Power, for its part, makes its policy pretty clear: "Any excess power from the solar system that may flow back to Mississippi Power can be credited to the customer under our CSPP-3 rate explained here."

That means you'll only get full-price savings for electricity you actually use while your solar system is generating electrcity, i.e., while the sun is shining, you're getting free energy, but you're also selling the additional generation for about half of what you would otherwise pay. Pretty raw deal, Miss Power.

What is net metering? Net metering is the billing arrangement where you can sell excess electricity back to your utility for equal the amount you are charged to consume it. The more customer friendly net metering policies, the higher the grade.

The grade here specifically reflects individual solar system capacity, caps on program capacity limits, restrictions on “rollover” of kWh from one month to the next (yep just like cell phone minutes), metering issues (like charges for new meters), Renewable Energy Credit (REC) ownership, eligible customers and technology (the more renewables the better), being able to aggregate meters across the property for net metering, and safe harbor provisions to protect customers from solar tariff changes.

Mississippi Interconnection Rules

None

Mississippi's Interconnection Standards grade

Likewise, Mississippi is one of fifteen states lacking statewide standards for interconnection. Utility companies have full discretion not only on whether to offer net metering, but also over what is required for you to get your solar power system connected to the grid in the first place.

Interconnection rules are a little technical, but they basically allow you to “plug in” to the electric grid with solar panels on your roof. The more complex, out of date, or nonsensical the state rules are for plugging into the grid, the lower the grade.

Specifically, the grade reflects what technologies are eligible, individual system capacity, removing interconnection process complexity for smaller systems, interconnection timelines and charges, engineering charges, prohibiting the requirement of unnecessary external disconnects, certification, spot interconnection vs. wide area interconnection, technical screens, friendliness of legalese, insurance requirements, dispute resolution, and rule coverage.

Solar Incentives in Mississippi

Mississippi Solar Power Rebates

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Solar Rebates grade

With no RPS in place, politicians and utility companies have no incentive to help promote solar power. They’re happy to leave all the costs to you… until they face stiff penalties for failing to satisfy an RPS, that is. Given all of Mississippi’s sunshine, legislators have a golden opportunity to harness cheap and plentiful energy, but they need to start pushing statewide incentives to make use of all those solar resources.

How do solar rebates work? Similar to getting a rebate card from your local big box store for a dishwasher purchase, state legislatures also provide rebates for solar panel purchases to spur on investment and create new jobs. If you purchase the solar panel system yourself, you qualify for this free cash, which many times is a lump payment back to you. Some solar installers like to take this amount directly off the total installed price, and they'll handle the paperwork for you to make things a lot less complex.

The availability of state and utility rebates were sourced from the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Energy Efficiency. The better the rebates, the higher the grade.

Mississippi Solar Power Tax Credits

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Solar Tax Credits grade

Mississippi offers no state tax credit based on your costs when purchasing a solar panel system. As mentioned above, lawmakers in Jackson can’t even get good solar legislation out of committee in the state House of Representatives. Not to worry, though; the feds offer a 30% tax credit when you install a system, which reduces first-year costs considerably, even in solar-backward Mississippi.

About state solar tax credits: State tax credits are not technically free money. However, they are 'credits' and not 'deductions' which means that if you have the tax appetite to take advantage of them, then they can be a 1-to-1 dollar amount off your taxes instead of a fraction of the cost of the system. So that means they can be an important factor to consider. In certain circumstances, state tax credits can provide a very powerful incentive for people to go solar.

(Keep in mind, we are not tax professionals and give no tax advice so please consult a professional before acting on anything we say related to taxes)

The availability of personal tax credits for solar energy were sourced from the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Energy Efficiency. The higher the tax credit amount, the higher the grade.

Solar Power Performance Payments

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Solar Performance Payments grade

Mississippi has no solar performance payments program. Sad!

Explanation of performance payments: Performance payments represent a big chunk of the financial rationale for going solar, and in many instances they make your decision a wise one. For certain states, if you’ve got solar panels on your roof, not only will you be cutting your electric bill down to size, but you'll be getting paid additional cash from your utility company. Pretty awesome, huh? Not only are you generating electricity for yourself, freezing your own popsicles with sun, and feeling like you’re doing something smart for your children or any of the other 4 reasons people go solar, but you are getting PAID!

Utility companies are paying people with solar panels on their roofs because their states say they have to, otherwise they will pay a fee. Therefore, the payment amount to homeowners is typically a little bit less than the amount they would be billed for by the state. For states with these alternative compliance fees, Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC) exchanges have popped up. In the above chart, we outlined an estimate of yearly payments a homeowner might expect from the utility company for the SREC credits from their solar energy system.

Expected SREC payments were calculated by using the latest trade values in the SRECtrade database. The availability of feed-in tariffs were sourced from the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Energy Efficiency. The higher the expected monthly payments, the higher the grade.

If you don’t know what an SREC is, or how they work, check out this great SREC video

Property Tax Exemption

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Solar Property Tax Exemptions grade

When you install a solar panel system on your home, it’s resale value goes up considerably. The best states for solar recognize this, and reward solar homeowners by exempting the extra value from property taxes. No dice here in the Magnolia State.

About solar property tax exemptions: Property tax exemption status is a pretty big factor when putting together your investment considerations. Many argue that solar power adds approximately 20 times your annual electricity bill savings (if you are owning the system and not leasing. Leasing still has a positive impact on the ability to sell your home though, in our opinion).

For many average-sized solar power systems on a house, that can mean $20,000 to your home value. (Edit April, 2014: Some companies, like Solar Mosaic, are starting to offer traditional style equity-based home loans for such a thing). An additional $20,000 in property tax basis in many states amounts to a big chunk of change owed back to the state. However, many states have complete exemptions from added taxes when you install solar on your home!

The availability of a property tax exemption for solar energy was also sourced from the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Energy Efficiency. The stronger the tax exemption, the higher the grade.

Sales Tax Exemption

None

Grade: F

Mississippi's Solar Sales Tax Exemption grade

Mississippi also offers no exemption from sales tax, meaning you’ll pay a premium of 7% above the installed costs of your system. This is a simple way to help homeowners go solar, and Mississippi once again misses the mark.

What's the deal with solar power sales tax exemptions? When states give you a sales tax break on solar, we notice. You should too. State sales tax exemption status for the purchase of solar energy systems were sourced from the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Energy Efficiency. Sales tax exemptions, if present, were all 100%. A handful of states are completely exempt from sales tax regardless, and therefore received ‘A’ grades by default (OR, DE, MT, AK, and NH).

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The consensus on Mississippi solar power rebates and incentives

The Mississippi legislature is really singing the blues when it comes to solar energy. The state’s leaders have hardly even mentioned the words in their sessions since 2005. With all the rebuilding in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Ike, the state could take the opportunity to protect the environment by promoting clean energy too. It’s about time the legislature took a stand in support of solar power. As it stands, we have to give Mississippi a “F” for it’s current climate. It can’t be helped out of failing only by the level of sun the state gets and the spotty TVA incentives.

Again, if you are confused about how these numbers work and would like some personalized assistance or a quote of your own, simply connect with our network of solar experts. They’ll help sort out all the pricing, get you access to special deals, and they’re super friendly to boot!

67 thoughts on “Mississippi Solar Power for your house – rebates, tax credits, savings

  1. Anonymous says:

    Has there been anything new on HB 793 bill? Have any changes for solar in Mississippi happened since this was published?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Any solar panel manufacturing companies in mississippi near gulf-port.

  3. Dave says:

    Gulfport High School is transitioning to Career Academies next school year. The foundation of our Academic Institutes is Project Based Learning and my Construction Technology students have decided build a greenhouse this school year that can be used in the future to explore and develop renewable energy and sustainable resources. Right now they’re researching water harvesting, solar and wind power generation, and 12V electrical systems opposed to 120v systems. Of course funding is a concern and since this is brand new way of going about education we’re jumping in head first. If anyone out there has information, advice or assistance please let me know!

    We want this greenhouse completely off the grid with students constructing, installing, testing and using the technologies to enhance their educational experience. Furthermore, the greenhouse will afford Culinary, Science, Health Sciences, Business, Marketing and many other Technical and Academic teachers an opportunity to enhance the educational experience of their students as well. Big picture, we’d like to create “Sustainability Village” conceived, designed, constructed, maintained and used by the students to explore and develop green, renewable energy understanding and practices. I’m excited about this opportunity! I just need help getting the community excited as well!

    Dave

  4. shelley says:

    Keep an eye on HB 793. I have to be optimistic about this bill passing. I mean we have been behind the power curve (pun intended) for way too long here. This bill has some really good incentives to make solar energy more affordable for our state. Eventually, the more we demand, the louder we get, it will happen.

  5. Paul says:

    Inaction may be the biggest form of action.
    Jerry Brown

  6. http://www.dsireusa.org/incentives/incentive.cfm?Incentive_Code=MS01F&re=0&ee=0

    Mississippi Development Authority is offering loans for solar installations in MS for 3% Below prime! This money is funded from oil overcharge restitution funds from the US DOE. Take advantage of it now before it is gone.

  7. Paul says:

    This guy try’s to discuse sustainability with a Pearl River Vally Electric Power employee. Check out the employee’s reaction.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cluBNxfUOS8&sns=em

  8. Paul says:

    I get the feeling the Mississippi public service commission and our representative are doing little more than posturing a renewable Mississippi. I’ve seen new power plants and offshore drilling get driven right on though the system while anything putting money back in the public’s pocket gets hung up in a docket or never brought up for a vote.

    Bull, that comment has exactly the type language the power company uses to cause doubt about producing ones own solar energy. I find it strange your keeping up to date on podunk Mississippi’s emergence (or lack there of) into renewable energy, seems you would post something in other states with the same issues.

    bull, While “enemy” is usually a strong word,its simplest meaning is one who opposes the interests or views of another. I suggest most of your comment be written off as power company propaganda, because if you were actually following MS RE policy you would probably know that “junk” or “dirty power” refers to the wave form of the energy being produced and you would also know that inverters labeled for grid tie use would be UL listed and would meet all requirements to be connected to the grid, including the wave form.

  9. shelley says:

    Contact your state Rep to pass HB 1051. This will enable you to get a tax credit for your solar installation. Mississippi deserves this credit. Contact pwatson@house.ms.gov and ask him to bring it to a vote and vote yes.

  10. alternate energy solutions says:

    House Bill 1051 needs to be brought up for a vote and passed this year. It will allow tax credits for the purchase of solar systems. Please contact your rep to let them know to vote yes on HB 1051. Or copy and paste Percy Watson at pwatson@house.ms.gov.
    Mississippi deserves these tax credits.

  11. Bull Hanson says:

    I find the comments that I have read to be very interesting. It seems to me that the majority of comments view the power companies as the “enemy”, which I believe they are not.

    Power utility companies do the best they can to provide safe, reliable, inexpensive power, while trying to plan for future growth, as well as trying to control rising costs.

    When you consider the volatile pricing structure of coal, and the fact that the coal companies usually only provide one year contracts, maintaining resonable priced power can be difficult, but the power companies manage to do it.

    I read of someone having $500 monthly power bills. I would suggest that you check for leaks all around your house (windows, doors, insulation in the attic, etc.). How old is you AC unit (inside and outside units), the older the units are the less efficient they will be. Same with your water heater. The stove, water heater, and AC/heat will consume the most power each month.

    Someone else suggested selling the power company the extra power that the home owner didn’t use/produced to the power company at the same rate that they pay the power company. You have to understand that the power company, to survive, must charge a profit, just like any other company, and your monthly power bill represents this. So, because of this, it is very unlikely that the power company will purchase power and then resell it at the same price. You say raise the price to the consumer. Do you want to pay more?

    Take into consideration that the power companies need to maintain their facilities, ever increasing regulations and requirements are expensive, employees compensation and insurance benefits, along with a host of other expenses, all add to the power companies costs to produce power.

    Our country was built on oil, just about everything we do and have can be traced back to oil. From powering our automobiles, to plastics, to cleaning products, to paint, to rubber, etc. Over the last 100 years we have adjusted our life styles to the conveience of oil, and to the conveiences that oil has provided. It will take time for other sources of energy to work its way into our life style, but it will happen.

    The same goes for power companies. In the begining coal was used because it was cheap and plentiful, natural gas was also used, as well as nuclear. But the clear winner is coal. Coal has been used as a fuel to produce power for about 100 years, and obviously the power industry is geared towards coal. I think that change will occur, but it will take a while for other manufacturing processes for electrical power to be adopted.

    Remember that most utility companies are very conservative in how they act and spend their money. They have spent a great deal of their resources on their current generating facilities, and like most other companies move slowly into unproven new markets of technology.

    Should the Federal, State or Local governments subidize an individuals purchase of a solar power system for their house, I’m not sure. Because it is not the governments job to provide improvments to ones home. On the other hand, it is the governments job to help with emerging technology, especially if it will benefit the country as a whole.

    I think most renewable power sources have a place in our society, based on the region of the country you live in.
    In the region I live in, solar power is probably best (lots of sunshine). I plan on having a solar system within the next year, after I have investigated what is best for me, my community, and yes, the power company.

    There is much to consider when installing a solar power system, and one aspect is selling power back to the power company. But the power that you produce must be “clean” because most power utilities will not buy “junk” or “dirty” power. Remember, the power you sell back to the power company will enter the power grid, and junk or dirty power can cause problems to “systems” as well as to other structures capable of accepting power.

    I have nothing to do with any power company or governing body. I’ve simply been following the emergence of renewable energy technology and the electrical power industry.

  12. Paul says:

    Prentis, I recommend you contact TVEPA concerning your interest in solar panels,it appears they do participate in TVA’s green power switch program.This program is the best you can get in MS and several of the surrounding states.
    I think you may have some problems in your homes electrical system, if your as frugal with your usage as you say you are and your bill is still 500 bucks. I would like to talk with you, email me at showmeyourgreencard@gmail.com

  13. Prentis says:

    I assume TVA Batesville, MS has been reading my meter wrong for over eight years My light bill is always $300 to $400 dollars every month. I have a computer and a lamp fridge and AC on the hot days but I cut it off at night. In the winter I burn wood for heat and block off every room in my home except for the kitchen bathroom & bedroom. I have not had gas in my tank in four years I can not afford it. I cook outside on the grille 90% of the time In the month of May 2011 I got a light bill for $89.00 but this month 6/2011 TVA sent me a bill for over $500.00 dollars. I am disable and can not afford food because of TVA’S high cost of electricity. I sure wished I could get some of those solar panels everybody’s talking about but they tell me they are to expensive for someone like me. I am so sick of having my lights turned off because I can’t pay the bills TVA sends me. I have a breathing machine I am attached to 24/7 but a friend loaned me a gas powered generator so I can keep it going when my lights get cut off. My point is If I ever get the funds I want a solar powered home too. Love to everybody God bless.

  14. The 2011-published, “Free Market Solar Power” book explains that, to win over the Red States, Solar PV is best advocated as a wealth generator for “Joe Six Pack” and only secondarily for its ecological benefits — benefits that greenies too often exaggerate (Solar PV, for example, will NOT lessen our dependence on foreign oil). Hence, the solar vendors should work toward bringing Solar PV’s cost down to $1/watt installed — without subsidies. That includes eliminating costly government regulations.

    $1/watt will open up a “Solar Aisle” at Home Depot, commodity (like PCs) level sales, and resulting epic ecological benefit. It will also trigger a tidal wave of prosperity built on net-new-wealth, not “government-printed” wealth.

    The book also explains why two wrongs STILL do not make a right: The answer to subsidizing brown power is NOT to subsidize green, which only inflates prices (so solar vendors cop much of the spread) and thus creates even more Corporate Welfare Queens. The answer is to de-subsidize brown. Government officials, like all central planners, are the last people who should be making choices for the free market. Consumers should.

    Even so, if we must have subsidies, then the book proposes the most efficient kind: Back-end, tied to performance, and use private solar vendor dollars to do it. Those vendors can stream “supplemental reverse meter credits” through local utilities and receive highly targeted, valuable advertising in return. That would also further commit the utilities to green power — a twin benefit.

    My book is completely free, no gimmicks, come-ons or ads: https://sites.google.com/site/freemarketsolarpower/ It includes photos and details of my 10KW Solar PV array and a new, Ultra-Green (but less costly than conventional) housing prototype that I designed.

  15. Brent Bailey says:

    Many of the posts above have called for some sort of organized action and interaction with elected officials and utility executives. On May 10-11 in Biloxi, MS, an event is being held that will allow citizens an opportunity to engage with officials, utilities, and business leaders.

    Advocates for biomass utilization and renewable energy development from across the state and region will gather in Biloxi, Mississippi on May 10-11, 2011, to learn, promote and network. The theme of the conference “A Decade of Promoting Biomass and Renewable Energy”, will celebrate the 10 year history of the Southern Bioproducts and Renewable Energy Conference. Since 2001, researchers, project developers, policy makers and renewable energy advocates from all backgrounds have come together on an annual basis to help lay the critical pathway the state and southern region must take to advance a new energy future that is clean, vibrant and more secure.

    Other conference activities include a student research poster competition, with cash prizes. In addition, the Mississippi Biomass and Renewable Energy Council will award its sixth Undergraduate Biomass Studies Scholarship, in the amount of $1,000 towards a student’s tuition. Interested students may obtain a scholarship application form from the Mississippi Biomass and Renewable Energy Council website (www.ms-biomass.org). Applications are due by April 15.

    For more information: Online registration and a downloadable registration form are available at http://www.ms-biomass.org along with a detailed agenda.

    For additional conference information, contact Tamme Bufkin, 601-408-8508, tbufkin@megagate.com, or Lydia Allison, 662-325-0479, lallison@bagley.msstate.edu.

    You can also contact me bbailey@25×25.org

  16. shelley says:

    By the way. The price to install solar has come down and federal incentives have gone up since they posted that spreadsheet above. We would install a 2 KW system for about $16,000 you would get a 30% federal tax credit of $4,800, which would bring the cost down to $11,200!
    If you installed this on your business, you would get an additional tax credit plus save on the amount you pay to the utility company and have this renewable energy system producing energy for well over 30 years.
    http://www.alternateenergyms.com
    Also green drinks in gulfport/biloxi is looking for someone interested in renewable energy to organize their meetings again. We have not had a leader in over a year! If you are spirited and would like to organize this group-please step up and take the reigns. contact http://www.msalternateenergy@gmail.com

  17. shelley says:

    Thanks Paul. I just sent an email to them saying basically I would not recommend anyone connecting their solar power to the grid unless we got paid for providing the utility company with the power that was generated by our solar power the same rate at which they charge us for using their power. We would both benefit. The peak load period, the time in which the utility company uses and needs the most power happens to be the time in which our solar panels are producing the most power and we are not at home to use that power. The utility company could use that power say (1 KW) then and at night when we get home we use (1KW) for free. That is dollar for dollar fair. Until they are willing to net meter in this manner I would not connect to the grid. One day they might see the light (no pun) and ask to use our green generated power. They may be mandated to use it. I don’t see why they would have a problem with it. That has got to be a “c’mon man”…

  18. Paul says:

    The internet, chase.

    The epa of Mississippi wants to hear your thoughts on renewable energy. They have started a “lets talk” page and apparently want to know what you think. heres the link. http://www.epaofms.com/form_letsTalk.aspx

  19. Paul says:

    This is where I got the system. http://www.affordable-solar.com/grid-tie-kits.htm

    If each one of South Mississippi Electric Power Association’s 400,000 costumers installed 2 panels (400 watts) on their home it would amount to 160,000,000 watts or 16 mega watts. So every hour the sun was shinning those small systems would be producing enough to power 106 homes for 1 month. today we had 6 hrs of strong productive sun that would have powered 600 homes for 1 month. I’d say not to shabby for an inefficient rock sitting in the sun. fun fact; trees are less than 5% efficient at converting sun light to growth, not sure what the losses where during the millions of years it took the earth to form lignite and coal, maybe plants where more efficient at converting the sun’s energy back then.

    Barbour’s answer to energy is to use more nonrenewable energy to extract more nonrenewable energy so that america can use more nonrenewable energy and apparently thats going to reduce the cost of energy so that we can all use
    (you guessed it) MORE NONRENEWABLE ENERGY. Now thats an energy platform to run on. Oh and don’t worry he has if from the highest authority (probable the power company) that we have 100 or 200 years worth of this cheap energy left. I guess the rate cuts will kick in right after we pay off Mississippi Powers new gasification plant? He has it all figured out.

    Oh, david, I wanted to make sure you seen this on mississippi power’s web site,

    Q: Is it true that Mississippi Power is receiving federal funding?

    A: Yes. To offset the costs to construct the facility, Mississippi Power has received a $270 million grant from the Department of Energy, $133 million in investment tax credits approved by the IRS provided under the National Energy Policy Act of 2005, and loan guarantees from the federal government. Mississippi Power has also applied for an additional $279 million in IRS tax credits. Mississippi Power also recently received an additional $279 million in IRS tax credits.

    Looks as though they got nice chunk of your tax dollars as well $961,000,000 and MS tax payers will get to pay for the rest of it though rate hikes. We could have 5 panels on every house in Mississippi for that.

    I hate to be nasty but can’t stand to be pushed into a corner and ignored by representatives.

    showmeyourgreencard@gmail.com

  20. chase says:

    paul who did you buy your system from

  21. Paul says:

    Maybe David has something there, I emails Pearl River Vally Electric and Mississippi power and South Mississippi Power Association today to see if they would offer blocks of renewable energy to their customers. A block being 100 kwh for say 3 bucks extra on your bill. something like this http://www.stoughtonutilities.com/renewable.aspx
    This would solve several things.
    1.The power company could pay a better rate to the renewable source instead of 4 cents it would be 6 or 7 cents per kwh
    2.It would shut up some of the belly aching.
    3. People could choose if they want to support renewable energy.
    4. Our state representatives could hold their positions be it “could care less” or “looking the other way $$$”
    If you would like to be given the option to purchase renewable energy from your power company please email me at showmeyourgreencard@gmail.com
    We need to get organized…

  22. Paul says:

    Here is a link to the monitoring site for my system in Perkinston Mississippi. http://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/rQq46398 Regardless of the dew point, humidity, wind, haze, cloads or some times even when it rains the solar panels still put out power. There have been dark rainy days where the system only put out 1 kwh but as you’ll see there have been plenty productive days.

  23. Paul says:

    I may have over reacted, I should have just added to what David has pointed out. While these industries do employ many people there will be a transition period where for say 20 years jobs will be added on the renewable side. My local utility provider prvepa will still need all 137 employees it currently has. smepa which is who supplies the coal/lignite power would be smart to start investing in ways to store the renewable energy again adding jobs. As for the oil companies you failed to mention terrorist getting a big chunk of the profits which were record breaking the last few years and how when the oil is gone their will be hell to pay. America will be crippled and the people that laughed all the way to the bank will now have nothing to lose and we all know where terrorist with big bank account can lead. Hows the standard of living going to be then? Don’t worry about the government they will easily find a way to capitalize on renewable.

    As for the efficiency portion of your comment, what are you comparing it to ?
    Are you referring to the loses from the panels to the appliance? For a 225 watt panel you’ll end up with 195watts at the point of use. I think I can live with that. Maybe your referring to the efficiency rate of the panels, where I would say the space on the roof was not used and now produces power and shades a what would have been super heated roof.

    Your posts are just another attempt to discredit anything that threatens the power company’s coal sales just like SMEPA’s article about renewable energy. where are yall living? Mississippi has plenty of sunny days and even when its overcast the system will keep up with my base loads excluding the big ac. Here’s the link where the ceo of SMEPA tries to make us feel like we live in rainy cloudy weather all the time. The only thing he left out is the fact we also have dark nights. He goes on to say how they did a survey and no one wants to pay more for power, YOU DON”T SAY,Where was this survey when they decided to invest in a new lignite plant? Energy rates will go up making the payback of these systems shorter and shorter.
    http://www.smepa.coop/news/News%20Releases/Renewable%20Energy%20Sources%20-%20What%20Can%20We%20Really%20Expect,%20February%202009.doc.pdf .
    Also don’t rely on the power company to give you a accurate price for solar panels. They try to act like you need to offset all of your power. All you need to do at this point is offset your base load to get the quickest pay back.

    If any one needs help with the 35 page interconnection agreement I’ll fill it out and do the commissioning test. The wiring for residential scale solar with micro inverters is just as easy as hooking up a water heater.

    To some this up , I disagree with the power companies opinions and valueations of renewable. We look forward to receiving a nice share of those tax dollars soon.

  24. shelley says:

    Its bad enough that MS does not offer any tax incentives to help offset the cost to install renewable energy but it is a shameful thing when government grants are awarded to a MS business to install solar and that grant money is given to a solar company in another state! So much for building jobs in MS.

    David sounds like he listens to too much Rush. I wonder why he visits this site?

  25. Paul says:

    Hey David, You may be forgetting the fact that the power company claims to be non profit. Do you think renewable is the dumbest thing your tax dollars are being spent on? Why don’t we talk about where the 20 dollar meter fee (the power company charges) is going. For instance we pay 1.25 per month to the epa for a unadvertised life insurance plan (life patornage fund) that if you move or are late one month on your power bill it starts over. Now that disheartens me I think they have alot of “IF WE DON’T SPEND IT WE WON’T GET IT NEXT YEAR” going on. Instead of just letting the meters go forward and backward the power company is finding ways to make a reason to charge fees and make it as complicated as possible to interconnect. How many power companies do you know of that have gone under or filled bankruptcy due to renewable energy getting a good price per kwh? YOU SHOULD BE PROUD SOME PEOPLE ARE HOOKING UP CLEAN ENERGY TO YOUR DIRTY POWER LINES. The EPA’s in Mississippi are not capable of setting fair rates for renewable energy. why don’t we let the insurance companies charge what they want? BECAUSE THEY COULD NOT SET A FAIR RATE.

    On the other hand you right the gov will probable stay out of it because they and the public service commission roll over and piss on their selves every time the epa looks at them.

    Mississippians also should realize while solar does not have a quick pay back at least it does have a pay back where as your 200 or 300 dollar power bill will never pay you back.

    I can only hope one of our representative stands up. Heck I’d just appreciate them returning my calls.

  26. justin says:

    I think David works for Mississippi Power. Solar Power is feasible in any state even without incentives. what else can you buy that will pay for itself? Also, it is worth it to see look on the face of the utility company when the meter is always going the other way in day, and if you have enough batteries (usually 8-16 L 16) then you can unplug the utility anyway. check out http://www.solarpromagazine.com to see what the rest of the US is doing… Did you know that 24MW of PV was installed today, yesterday, and the day before in the world? Avoid corruption, stop renting power from them today.

  27. David says:

    After reading all these comments I am disheartned that most seem to think more government involvement is the answer. That and the evil utilites and oil companies are out to get us all. Has everyone forgotten that these “evil” companies employ thousands of people, pay dividends to thousands of investors, pay millions in taxes and give us a standard of living the world has never seen?

    I would also suggest taking tax payers money and subsidizing people who want to feel good about their “green” policy through tax credits is wrong. Solar panels cost a lot of money and are very inefficient. How about putting pressure on the companies that make the panels to lower the cost? (Anybody wrote a letter to GE lately?) They shouldn’t be allowed to make a profit either, right?

    It is absurd to think that most Mississippian’s are willing or capable of paying even $10,000 for solar power. Our government can’t afford tax breaks to put solar on enough homes to matter. The bottom line is that solar, wind and other renewables are not economically feasible on their own right now. No amount of whining about the lack of government “help” will change that. If you really want to do something to help the environment invent an inexpensive, effiecient solar panel. Or you could put your money where your mouth is and invest the $54K in your own panels without the use of my tax dollars.

  28. A. Till says:

    I have just recently become really interested in solar power and I’m only beginning to learn the details. Are there any suggestions for how to build-your-own solar panels? After reading these post I am a little discouraged about how our state doesn’t have the foresight to see how valuable solar power can be. I love my state but how behind the times can we be? My husband can make or build almost anything so maybe we can beat the system by building the panels ourselves…puzzled in Pelahatchie……..

  29. Mel says:

    Paul, great stuff! Would you send me some details of your solar equipment you used.
    Thx Mel
    office@lawnjox.com

  30. Paul says:

    sent to governor@governor.state.ms.us.

    I recently installed a small renewable source of energy on my home in Perkinston MS, after getting my new bill I realized I reduced my energy by 70% and was being charged 25% more for the energy I did use. After speaking with the power company about the issue they stated there was a 20 dollar a month fee just to have a meter. In my opinion this fee is not all that expensive when you use energy excessively, but when you start to reduce your energy it can add up quickly. last month I paid 17.5 cents per kwh where the average price per kwh in MS is 10 cents. While they are willing to pay you 4.387 cents per kwh for excess energy there will be a fee each month to pay for billing and administrative cost, to offset this fee it will cost you 3000 dollars in solar equipment at the 4.387 cent rate, so for my system this will be taking 1/3 off my energy to pay the fee. Now they will wave the fee if you decide to give them any excess energy you produce this creates a new issue with the fact I produce 2/3 more energy than I can use on comfortable days even when the temputures are extreme the air conditioning does not run constantly, so at times I’ll still be giving power away. With no net metering laws in place this would also be unacceptable. Net metering alone will not help renewable energy as much as every one thinks because the EPA’s are being allowed to set the value of renewable energy and the fees associated with them, with out the opinions of the public or their representation ( public service commission) . Also the EPA has stated when the rates go up for the new lignite plant they will not be increasing the rate they pay for excess renewable energy they purchase. It seems the whole world is driving toward renewable and Mississippi and the power companies are north bound in that south bound lane.
    I ask that our representative start picking up some of the issues relating to renewable energy. Its time, and the power company’s are not going to do it on their own.
    Your Constituent
    Paul Redmond

    1. Dan Hahn says:

      Great letter Paul!

  31. lynn daugherty says:

    I am very interested and looking into solar/wind energy for our home -my parents walk around in the dark and the monthly electric bill is still over $500.00. When Singing River Power stopped by to collect payment on another little house they own, I said, “How can it be $250.00 a month? No one even lives there!” The collector went sorta white in the face. Since then, that monthly bill has dropped to $54.00. So, do I completely trust the electric company? No.
    The price of the panels is amazing, but I have seen several sites where people successfully built them their selves and saved $1000’s. I would like to see- in Mississippi- workshops and businesses (for a fee) that help educate Mississippians to build them. Mississippi is a ‘do it myself’ state and we can do it. I aim to be a part of the solution- if just for my hard working dad. I will visit this site again for new information.

  32. The present fat-cat governor will be gone soon. The next one will be elected based on running a going green campaign, especially solar power. And we can start getting checks back from Entergy…can’t wait for that the rip offs!

  33. Renewable energy continues to grow in Mississippi due to noble citizen investments.Our state government is on the bottom of the list of networks that have fueled the growth of sustainable electricity in Mississippi due to policy and lack of ongoing investment into renewable energy, Haley Barbour has plans for oil,gas,and nuclear power-plants to begin construction in Mississippi. The state just does not have the power demands like California and Nevada, which is why they have better state incentives than we do. Louisiana on the other hand when compared to Mississippi embraces the adoption of renewable energy with policy and incentives for Louisianan’s.

    matt@mssolarsolutions.com

  34. Will Invest says:

    I am going to call WLBT news station in Jackson and ask what can be done, we need a petition to force the state to do what the people that pay there salary want. I keep hearing no one is spending money and the banks are lending at an all time low so why not make it easy on the people and boost the economy? If enough people call and ask WLBT it will get more air time and get out to all the people in MS not just the few with computers hooked to the internet.

  35. P.J. says:

    I am so depressed and disgusted by what the power companies are doing to us. My partner and I moved down here to Saucier, MS from TX eight years ago, and every single year our electricity rates go up, even though our energy consumption is the same and we have done several things to lower our energy usage. Finally last year I called our electric provider, Coast Electric, and asked them to send someone over to check our meter, because I just can’t believe we are using as much electricity as they claim on our bills. The woman on the phone disuaded me from this by saying that there was a charge to send someone over to do this (I believe the charge was about $50.00) and that 99.9% of the time they send someone over because someone like me feels there is something wrong, there isn’t anything wrong, so she was “just trying to save you some money”, as she put it. I explained to her that we had done as many affordable things to save energy and keep our home cool as we could afford, which included putting solar film on all windows, installing two attic fans on each gable for maximum hot air evacuation, caulking all windows, installing a tankless water heater, and having white shingles placed on our roof after hurricane Katrina damaged it. Yet, even with all of that, our little 1700sq foot brick home was bringing in electric bills of $250-300 in the winter (and we only use our heater sparingly for an hour or two in the winter mornings as we enjoy the cold) and summer bills of $350-400. We never payed this much in TX for electricity, and it was much hotter their than here, and we used up much more electricity to keep our home cool. It’s so bad that I can’t believe that I am now looking at planting quick growing Fig vines (Ficus pumila) all around our home so that they can cover the brick walls to hopefully keep the house cooler, by absorbing the suns rays & heats.

    I am also disgusted by the price of Solar panels. Yes, their prices may be coming down, but they are not low enough for average folks like us to afford. In this economy, who can afford fifty to a hundred thousand dollars to have a solar panel system installed? Heck, we can’t even afford ten grand for one. As for it paying for itself in 25 years, I expect to be dead by then, so that doesn’t help me either. If the government was really serious about saving energy and helping the public, they would subsidize solar panels completely, or at least 80-90% so that most folks could get them. But of course, that would put the electric companies out of business, and they have huge amounts of money & lobbyists to make sure this doesn’t happen. I wish to goodness I could offer my home as a model to some solar company so they could install enough panels to power everything and then show it off to everyone, but that’s just dreaming on my part. At this rate, we will have to move out of this beautiful state we have fallen in love with in the near future, because I can clearly see a day when we will have a $500-600 dollar electric bill on our little home, no matter what we do to conserve. With our state being the poorest one in the union, it is criminal more isn’t done to make solar panels affordable here where the sun is always shining. By the way, if you see a brick home in Saucier covered in ivy, feel free to drop by for a glass of iced tea. =)

  36. shelley says:

    What a horrible horrible tragedy that has happened off of our coast. We buy power from utility companies without thinking of how it is produced. This should be sign to our government and our citizens that we must curtail our dependency on oil! Solar may not be cheap but at what cost are we willing to pay with our environment? MS has refused to provide us with any incentives to purchase renewable energy. This year again they let us dow by not supporting SB2444. At least Percy Watson let us down. He is the chair of the house ways and means. What is it going to take? Why don’t they care?

  37. JODY says:

    UNTIL THE POWER COMPANIES ARE REQUIRED TO PRODUCE GREEN POWER, WE IN MISSISSIPPI ARE NOT GOING GET ANY HELP ON THE SOLAR ISSUE. I SPENT TWO WEEKS IN SAN JOSE CAL IN DEC 2008 GOING TO A SOLAR SCHOOL TO LEARN HOW IT WORKS AND HOW TO INSTALL SOLAR. WHAT I LEARNED WAS CALIFORNIA WANTS SOLAR POWER AND MISSISSIPPI DOES NOT. UNTIL WE START PUSHING OUR POLITICIANS TO ACT WE WILL NEVER GET THE HELP WE NEED.

  38. Stephen Cheek says:

    I think the Mississippi congress should get behind solar energy for homeowners. It’s time to take a lead in something.

    1. We’re right behind you, Stephen. BTW, just in case you’re near Oxford, Hotty-toddy, gosh almighty, who the hell are, we etc. :). Ringing cowbell if you happen to be aligned with that other team. ;)

  39. Selina says:

    I’m with Melanie, 25 years to pay for itself doesn’t sound like a viable alternative to me either. Not only will you be paying for the solar kit, but you will still have a power bill. I’m looking for something around $15,000-$20,000 for a 2400 sq ft. house that uses anywhere from 2000-2800 kwh a month. Also, if there are no rebates, incentives, or tax credits for at least the first 5 years you have your system, it’s not saving anyone anything, just adding a second mortgage on your homes to have pennies for 30 years. Heck, most people can’t afford that and at this time people are trying to get OUT of debt and not in it. People are worried about this government and what they are going to put on us next to pay our of our checks and taking from our children’s mouths to start going in debt for $54,000+ on a solar panel that can be blown away by the next hurricane. Yes, I know I’m a bit negative, but until Mississippi makes it cheap enough to have solar homes, my family will not be able to do it, although I would love to.

    1. You’re right, Selina. Mississippi has a great deal of sunlight, yet the legislators refuse to keep up with the times and create rebate and incentive programs. The best thing you could do is create some kind of press to shame the governor and the legislator into getting up to speed with the rest of the Country and to start creating some kind of subsidy to encourage solar. Thanks for commenting.

  40. Kelly says:

    I have just been visited by relatives from Biloxi. Since I have started a solar company here in Florida I thought I would see what the incentives were in MS. It doesn’t look too good. And from what the relatives were saying, your electric rates will effectively be doubling within the next 3 years.But on the bright side, prices for solar panels are down right now. The price for a totally installed 5kw system should be around $9 per watt or $45,000. The fed tax credit will bring it down $13,500 to $31,500. When you calculate the payback keep in mind the increase in utility rates. What Mississippians should lobby for is a Renewable energy dividend program like what was passed in Gainesville FL. It is similar to the programs in Germany which catapulted it into first place for solar energy production. And Germany has the solar insolation of Alaska! Go to http://www.farenergy.org for more info and start a grassroots chapter in MS. Good Luck. Things can get brighter if we keep looking up.

  41. Melanie says:

    25 years to pay for itself doesn’t sound like a viable alternative just yet! Who can afford to spend another 54K on their home and have that investment increase the value of the home only 13k? This is not a viable alternative solution at this price!

  42. Tabatha says:

    I’ve just sent an email not only to Dean Kirby, but to each and every member of the MS Senate Finance committee. I was very polite but I let them know in no uncertain terms that I am displeased with the death of this bill. MS is so behind the times its not even joke worthy anymore. We need to be on the cutting edge. The destruction left behind after Katrina was the perfect time to rebuild GREEN. How about that Kansas town that went as green as possible after being destroyed by a tornado, Greensburg, I think it was? Long Beach or Biloxi could have used that imprint, buuuuut, MS doesn’t offer the incentives.

  43. shelley says:

    Retract previous statement. The HB 194 did pass the ways and means committee but died in the finance committee, thanks to the chair Dean Kirby. If any of you think that bill should have passed, please let Mr. Kirby know, dkirby@senate.ms.gov
    The only way to get these types of incentives passed is to let them know that you want it.

  44. shelley says:

    Mississippi!! You can say that with a little more pride now. Mississippi passed H.B.194. The Great State of Mississippi will now give a tax credit (that can be carried foward for up to 5 years) of 50% of the first $25,000.00 for the purchase of wind or solar. You can find this on line by typing in HB 194 on MS legislature web page. This is a huge savings for installing solar on our homes espically when you consider the 30% tax credit from the federal government. Now we, Alternate Energy Solutions, can begin to install solar without any reservations in our minds that our customers now have the proper incentives in place. Thank you Mississippi Legislature.

  45. John says:

    Hey! There are now FIVE bills before the state legislature regarding renewable energy.
    http://index.ls.state.ms.us/2009Session.html
    Go to this site and search the word “solar”.

  46. Brad says:

    The truth is the power companies and the oil business are just like we hear about the car companies, they are “JUST TOO BIG TO FAIL” The central banks and the IMF control all this, and they do not like competition period. Not solar, wind, free energy of any kind is just not acceptable. They might allow a few just to keep us from raising questions but if wind or solar is allowed someone on top will control our strings. We are puppets. These guys even decide our leaders, elections are like football games, just something for our entertainment. They control the media, elections, energy, your time, etc. Heck there is a car now that runs on air but it will never be sold here. Just search the net for aircar to see for yourself.

  47. George says:

    I just moved last year from Germany to Mississippi, bought a home and enjoying this huge amount of sunshine here, decided to take some money out of my savings and install a solar roof doing something for our energy independence and saving our environment. Now I´m quite shocked about the missing solar tax incentives here. Even Germany has much higher tax rebates for solar installations although having much less sunshine than MS. What a waste of ressources…we could avoid 160 tons and more of greenhose gases a year per home! This is an amount of waste filling a 16 wagon train per home per year!!
    Politicians of Mississippi…wake up and take your responsibility for the future generation, our energy independence and our healthy environment.
    Support all these people writing here and all who are willing to invest and to do something for our progress in energy independence and use the huge potential of this wonderful sunny state. Mississippi could advance from the last rows in the US economy to the most developed states if we would use this terrific geographical advantage for use and development of solar utilities here…as I see, there are a lot of people ready to go for it…

  48. T-Bone says:

    We all
    know the cost of alternative energy is high but what will it take for us to become part of the solution hmmmmmm I know lets stop paying taxes until we get something for our money like honest officials who live like we live (just above broke)

  49. shelley says:

    We are Alternate Energy Solutions LLC and we feel just like all the rest of you. That’s why we developed this company! To help the citizens of MS reduce their electric bill with the use of solar, solar thermal, and wind. At least now the federal government has lifted the cap on the 30% incentive. It used to be up to $2,000. Now it is 30%, no cap. But it does not go into effect until Jan 2009. But hey it’s a start. Now we just need to let our leaders know that we demand net metering, at least the same rate we pay them per kwh then MS could get on board with incentives that other states like AZ and CA have to actually encourage people to purchase renewable energy instead of just trying to sound politically correct. And they beautiful thing about it is that other states have already done the research and policies on it. MS does not have to re invent the wheel. Just look at other states policies and taylor one for MS. I’m tired of MS lagging behind on everything, embarrased even. Obviously you all want to be green, you just want the same incentives that other states have. So come on MS. Listen to the public and enact some renewable energy laws that will benefit this beautiful state and her people. http://www.alternateenergyms.com

  50. Tim says:

    Mississippi Power’s answer sounds like an answer from a monopoly. Just the thing to encourage the status quo.

  51. diana says:

    Sounds like Mississippi Power should “develop a better understanding.”

  52. Pat Heidingsfelder says:

    Back in Feb, I contacted MS Power on the subject of net metering. Sounds to me like they will, but at a very reduced rate…

    Dear Pat,

    Mississippi Power would like to thank you for submitting your question. We have put consideration into the issue, and have answered to best of our ability below. We hope this helps.
    Southern Company is committed to increase the amount of electricity from renewable resources such as Biomass and Green Energy programs. We have been, and continue to work, in conjunction with federal, state and local agencies on extensive environmental research and programs aimed to reduce greenhouse gases, promote energy efficiency, and renewable generation options.

    However, per MPC tariff, in order for a customer to sell power to MPC, the customer must do the following:
    1) Be a “qualifying facility” as defined by the 1978 Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA), Sections 201 and 210

    2) Sign a 5-year contract under Rate Schedule CSPP, provided that the customer’s generating capacity is no more than 100 kW.

    3) Interconnect with MPC in order to sell power through a separately metered service, i.e., the existing meter measures purchases by the customer under the standard electric service rate; the second meter measures purchases by the Company under the CSPP Rate Schedule.

    We do have a rate schedule for this situation, called CSPP-2 (Cogeneration and Small Power Production Purchases). Under this rate schedule the customer would pay MPC a fixed monthly fee to cover metering and billing associated costs. In addition, MPC would pay the customer a seasonal rate per kilowatt-hour for energy metered into the Company’s system.

    Mississippi Power hopes to have helped you develop a better understanding on this the issue. If you have further questions or inquiries, please contact us at http://www.mspower.com, or you can call our customer service line that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at: 1-800-532-1502. We are pleased to do business with you, and look forward to helping with any further questions or concerns.

    Sincerely,

    Lois

    Online Customer Care Representative

  53. Al says:

    What about these new solar shingles? Cost, effectiveness. They look great because they blend in with your other shingles.

  54. KK says:

    WAKE UP MISSISSIPPI — Why can’t Mississippi do like Idaho when it comes to Alternative Energy Rebates.

    http://www.thenaturalabode.com/renewable_energy/Idaho_Energy_Incentives.htm

    I’m thinking of moving to Idaho just for the Rebates.

  55. Travis Whitaker says:

    Who out there knows how to get through to Governor Barber to tell him Mississippi’s middle class need some big incentives implemented. We need the same incentives as Florida and California.

  56. Burney says:

    The price of oil is going up everyday and so are electric bills. Even Lousiana has tax credits for solar. How can we get this done.

  57. Buddy says:

    We are facing a energy crisis and our state is not offering opportunitys for us to utilize our natural energy (sun shine). Whats up with that??? Why not have net metering and catch up with the other 40 states who encourage energy independence?

  58. Annie says:

    RE: Please write:
    Government office:Barbour

    http://www.governorbarbour.com/

    FAX Or write.

    P.O. Box 139 | Jackson, MS 39205 | Phone: 601.359.3150 | Fax: 601.359.3741

  59. Annie says:

    Let us get the Solar going in Mississippi and get out of the as always last place for Solar energy: Please write a message/Letter to Gov Barbour.

  60. Nikki T. says:

    I agree with Pat H. Why wouldn’t Mississippi incorporate solar with all the building going on (residential and commercial)????

  61. Truck says:

    Could not agree more here. But most of the ppl in the senate and house are from oil/gas pockets anyway. Entergy Inc. has no incentive for anything ever. Because they are just like the greedy saudi’s. We are one of the poorest states but we have rates like california.

  62. Pat Heidingsfelder says:

    Being from Long Beach, MS and living the complete destruction from Katrina, I really think the state dropped the ball when it comes to solar and all other alternative energies. Solar and even wind energies could have been implemented very easily!

  63. Eric says:

    I wished gov barbour would sober up and catch up to the rest of the civilized world.

  64. Helen McDonald says:

    plase email additonal information about a loan for solor power instulation.

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