Small businesses have been offered incentives to go green by investing in energy-efficient systems such as solar panels and wind turbines, but seeing some green in return often requires patience.
Last July, the Treasury Department began accepting applications for its 1603 program, which awards businesses with cash payments of up to 30% off the total cost of installing a range of renewable-energy equipment, according to the Wall Street Journal. The program has distributed more than $3 billion to 499 U.S. businesses, including companies that install renewable-energy equipment on behalf of clients, said the Journal.
The payoff for investing in pricey alternative-energy technology comes down the road in the form of cheaper utility bills and possibly selling excess energy or energy credits to other companies.
Power Sport Industries Inc., a ball-bearing wholesaler in Pennsylvania, recently installed a 123-kilowatt solar panel system and has seen its monthly utility bills drop from an average of $1,500 a month to $600 a month, said the WSJ. The system cost $850,000, but the company received over $500,000 in federal and state grants to help cover the cost.
While some small businesses may have trouble getting a loan to pay for such a big project, but Abel Zalcberg, founder of OFM Inc., a North Carolina furniture manufacturer, received a loan that covered 100% of the cost of installing a rooftop solar panel.
“The banks are very positive on this kind of project and they’re not positive on much these days,” Zalcberg told the WSJ.
This article was submitted by Rohit Arora, co-founder of Biz2Credit. Biz2Credit is a small business marketplace that connects entrepreneurs with financing options and advice to grow their business. Send all questions to