Sunnova, a Houston-based solar power company, has just received $80 million in tax equity funding from the U.S Bancorp Community Development Corporation, a subsidiary of U.S Bank. Sunnova plans to use the money to fund more than $200 million worth of residential solar projects, Sunnova announced on Tuesday.
A tax equity deal will allow U.S Bancorp to claim the 30 percent federal tax credit for companies and individuals that install renewable energy systems. Although Sunnova is a first time user of tax equity funds to build business, it has received $1 billion in funding from other entities, according to the company’s statement.
The solar power company will offer plans for homeowners to buy or lease solar panels for their rooftops. Despite other solar energy companies offering to payback residential users for the amount of energy they give to the grid or credit their energy bill, Sunnova does not offer a credit for extra energy generated.
Last year the solar industry had a record-breaking year and additions to solar power capacity outpaced additions to any other energy source, according to a 2016 market report by the Solar Energy Industries Association, an industry trade group. Although Texas in particular has been slow to adopt solar power as a main source of energy, business has begin to pick up. Last year Texas ranked sixth in the U.S in regards to the amount of solar energy capacity installed that year. Overall it ranks ninth in the nation for its capacity to generate solar power.
Article written by HEI contributor Lydia Ezeakor.