Electricity customers living in deregulated states have more choices than ever when it comes to the type of electricity plan they choose for their home or business. Renewable energy plans are easily accessible and surprisingly affordable as well as very beneficial to the environment.
It’s Easy Being Green with Renewable Energy
Most Connecticut electricity providers offer 100% renewable energy electricity plans. Some also offer customers the ability to convert any available plan into a green plan for a small monthly fee.
How do customers get renewable energy to their home? Providers purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs) from qualified renewable energy generation facilities. One REC represents 1000 kWh of power generated from that facility. When a customer enrolls in a green electricity plan, the provider retires the RECs for the corresponding amount of power that the customer uses.
If you want to go green in Connecticut, you must select an alternative electricity supplier. Eversource and United Illuminating utility companies do not offer 100% renewable energy products.
Compare Renewable Energy Electricity Plans
Providers offer many flavors of renewable energy electricity plans. Green electricity plans are available with term lengths ranging from 1 to 3 years. Some providers offer short-term 100% renewable prepaid electricity plans.
At ElectricityPlans.com you can shop and compare renewable energy electricity plans from the most reputable providers in the state. 100% renewable energy electricity plans are available in both Eversource and the United Illuminating markets. You can get 100% renewable electricity in Hartford, Waterbury, Stamford, New London, Torrington, Bridgeport, New Haven, and more.
Enter your zip code at the top of this page to shop for 100% renewable energy electricity plans in your area.
What is the CT Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS)?
The State of Connecticut has one of the more aggressive green energy programs in the country. Each retail energy provider in the state is required to procure a minimum percentage of their electricity via renewable energy resources. This is known as a Renewable Portfolio Standard or RPS.
Qualifying sources of electricity generation for the Connecticut Renewable Portfolio Standard (Class I ) include:
- Wind (All)
- Solar Thermal Electric
- Solar Photovoltaics (also known as rooftop or community solar)
- Geothermal Electric
- Municipal Solid Waste or Landfill Gas
- Ocean Resources: Tidal, Wave, Ocean Thermal
By January 1, 2020, Connecticut’s RPS is 20%, meaning 20% of the energy sold in the state must be from renewable resources by that date. By 2040, Connecticut has set the ambitious goal of 40% of energy being from renewable resources.
But here’s the catch: if a retailer is selling some of their electricity at 100% renewable, that means their other products may not actually include any renewable electricity… even if the paperwork says they are meeting the RPS standard. Why? Because the 20% RPS requirement based on the retailer’s overall portfolio of electricity procured in the state, not on the specific product being offered.
That’s why if you really want to support green energy and a Clean Connecticut, you should select 100% Renewable Energy.
Where Does Connecticut Renewable Energy Come From?
When you buy 100% renewable energy in Connecticut, it can come from a variety of sources, as outlined above. Connecticut has very few actual renewable energy projects in the state. (Have you heard of “Not in My Back Yard” or NIMBY? It’s alive and well in Connecticut.)
For a brief period starting in 2011, Connecticut did not allow construction of industrial scale wind farms. As of 2019, there are 3 wind farms in Connecticut, and plans to build offshore wind turbines near Block Island.
With the fourth densest population and the third smallest geographic area in the country, Connecticut doesn’t have a lot of space to site wind projects. Nor is there a lot of wind to capture! So right now, the state buys a lot of its renewable energy from other New England states to meet is clean energy goals.
When you buy 100% renewable energy this may come in the form of RECS (renewable energy certificates) purchased nationally, or, preferably, within the New England region. Much of the 100% renewable energy sold in Connecticut and Massachusetts comes from wind farms in Vermont.
When you buy 100% renewable energy in Connecticut, you are helping to support additional investment in the region’s renewable energy infrastructure.
How to Calculate Rooftop Solar Payback Period in Connecticut
There are a number of national solar manufacturing companies that use door to door sales people to pitch rooftop installations in Connecticut. First off, didn’t your mom tell you not to talk to strangers? Second, rooftop solar is a considered purchase that usually involves complicated financing, possible roof reinforcement and approvals from the local town officials or HOA.
But the question is, if you want to go green, is rooftop solar worth it?
Your solar rooftop payback calculation should take into account:
- Cost of electricity
- Tax credits (available on a declining percentage through 2023; talk to a tax advisor!)
- Local rebates or state incentives
- Financing costs
When calculating your payback period for rooftop solar, pay attention to the details. Many calculators assume you are going to generate enough electricity to offset 100% of your electricity usage, and that you are selling back excess power onto the grid. If you are considering rooftop solar, you should contact your local utility company to find out about net metering programs. You will also need to include the costs of battery storage for your system (since you will need to store the power for nighttime usage.)
Whether rooftop solar will work for you will depend on the answer to these questions:
- Usable sunlight hours—How much usable sunlight your solar panels can collect during the day.
- Energy usage—How many kilowatt hours worth of energy your home uses each month.
- Square footage—How much square footage you have available, and how many square feet of solar panels you need.
- Incentives—What incentives your state or local government offers for the installation of solar panels on your property.
- Regulations—Any rules or laws regulating the installation of solar panels on private property in your area.
This is why the quick and easy way to go green in Connecticut is by choosing a 100% renewable energy plan.