June 3, 2009 / 9:12 PM / 8 years ago

Progress Energy expanding solar incentives

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - U.S. power company Progress Energy Inc announced a plan on Wednesday to expand the use of solar energy in the Carolinas and Florida by more than 100 megawatts over the next decade.

The move makes Progress Energy the latest in a string of U.S. utilities that have committed to buying more power generated from renewable sources.

The Raleigh, North Carolina company announced a string of initiatives, including incentives for residential customers who buy solar installations for their rooftops. The program would offer $1.50 to $2 a watt, or about 25 percent of the installed cost of the solar system.

The company also pledged to pay commercial solar customers for the energy produced from photovoltaic solar systems. The payments will be market based, it said.

Progress will also offer incentives for solar water heating for both residential and commercial customers and will install solar rooftop systems on selected schools in its service area at no cost to the schools.

Progress energy has two major utilities that serve about 3.1 million customers in the Carolinas and Florida.

Reporting by Nichola Groom; Editing by Andre Grenon

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