The CSI incentives differ by customer segment and system size, and are intended to encourage high performing systems.
There is an option of two types of incentives available through the CSI program: Expected Performance-Based Buydown and Performance-Based Incentives.
Expected Performance-Based Buydown (EPBB)
EPBB is a one time, up-front payment based on an estimate of the system's future performance.
Performance-Based Incentives (PBI)
Required for solar projects with a system larger than 30 kW, PBI incentives are monthly payments for 5 years based on actual performance (output) of the system as measured by a separate performance meter. Solar projects that are less than 30 kW but greater than 10 kW may opt into PBI. Please read the PBI Customer Manual (PDF, 418 KB) for a detailed description of the PBI payment process.
The incentive rate is based on the incentive type—EPBB or PBI, and the relevant customer segment—residential, commercial or government/non-profit and current incentive step.
CSI Incentives Budget Report
You may track the status of the current CSI program budget by visiting the California Solar Statistics website.
Incentive amounts are determined using an online tool called the Expected Performance Based Buydown (EPBB) Calculator. The calculator estimates the production of the system accounting for any factors which may affect performance such as equipment, location, orientation, tilt, shading and stand-off height.
Solar Customer Service Center 1-877-743-4112 (general solar inquiries)