The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved $108m in additional funding over the next two years for residential and commercial solar energy projects under the NY-Sun initiative.
The move authorises NYSERDA to plan the transition of its current solar programmes to a regional megawatt block structure, including a longer-term schedule for incentive rebate levels that change according to a predetermined set of targets.
NYSERDA will commit $30m of the total additional funding to increase solar installations in the downstate regions, while the remaining will be allocated based on regional budgets and market conditions as part of the transition.
The funding, which brings the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority's (NYSERDA) total budget for the next two years to $216m, will address growing demand for clean energy throughout the state and backs Governor Andrew M Cuomo's mission to reduce the cost of solar.
Launched in 2012, the NY-Sun initiative, which is aimed at increasing the amount of solar power installed annually at customer sites in the state, has a portfolio of operating and or under construction clean energy projects totalling 299MW.
Altogether, these projects will help curb around 145,000t of greenhouse gas emissions each year.
New York Solar Energy Industry Association president Shaun Chapman said at a time when many of the state's political leaders are failing to address the need to transition to clean energy sources, Governor Cuomo continues to position New York as a leader in solar energy.
"Through the NY Sun Program, which the Public Service Commission has responsibly acted upon, our industry is now empowered to deliver jobs and clean, low cost, renewable energy to all New Yorkers," said Chapman.