The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority is offering builders incentives of $2,000 to $8,000 per home to encourage net zero home construction and other levels of residential efficiency.
The incentives are offered through NYSERDA’s $33.3 million Low-rise Residential New Construction Program.
A net zero home can produce as much energy over a year as it needs. To achieve net zero through the program, builders may incorporate a combination of the following:
- Solar photovoltaic electric generating systems
- Solar thermal systems to generate domestic hot water, and for space heating
- Integrated designs that maximize the benefits of solar heat gains through 1) a building orientation that takes advantage of the daily and seasonal position of the sun, 2) window and door placement and the use of products such as multi-glazed windows and insulated doors, and 3) integrated building features, such as extended eaves or permanently installed awnings to reduce undesired solar heat gains
- Higher performance building elements than in typical homes, such as more effectively insulated wall panels and systems, both above and below ground level,
- Significantly increased air tightness achieved through integrated design and high-quality execution, including careful seam sealing and weather-stripping,
- Higher efficiency heating and cooling systems, including ground- and air-source heat pumps, as well as integrated heat- or energy-recovery ventilation systems,
- Advanced and integrated lighting design, which includes use of LED technologies and controls that take advantage of natural light,
- High-efficiency appliances, electronics and controls.
Calculating net zero considers seasonal climate factors, including variances in outdoor temperatures and the availability of solar energy.
While highest incentives will go to net zero homes, the NYSERDA program also encourages building of New York Energy Star Certified Homes. This means that homes are built to use less energy than conventional homes and provide homeowners with comfortable, durable, healthier, environmentally friendly environments that are cost-effective to own and operate. They may be single-family homes, townhouses or low-rise residential buildings (primarily three stories or fewer). .
Incentives are available through the Low-rise Residential New Construction program (PON 2309) through December 31, 2015.
Application details are here.