EZ Policies for Maryland
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|Policy||Place||Policy Type||Active||Implementing Sector||Summary|
|Allegany County Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance sets requirements for industrial wind energy conversion systems. These requirements include minimum separation distances, setback requirements, electromagnetic interference analysis (EIA), the establishment of bonds for the purposes of decommissioning and groundwater protection, as well as the establishment of supplemental safety provisions.|
|Animal Waste Technology Fund (Maryland)||Maryland||Grant Program||Yes||State/Province||A bill passed in 2012 transferred responsibility for animal waste management technology projects to the Maryland Department of Agriculture. The Department will maintain the Animal Waste Technology Fund, which provides funding opportunities for the research, development, implementation, and market development of technology intended to (a) reduce the amount of nutrients in animal waste, (b) alter the composition of animal waste, (c) develop alternative waste management strategies, or (d) use animal waste in a production process. Funds may be granted to individuals or businesses.|
|Anne Arundel County - High Performance Dwelling Property Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||The state of Maryland permits local governments (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-242) to offer property tax credits for high performance buildings if they choose to do so. In October 2010 Anne Arundel exercised this option by enacting legislation (County Bill 78-10) providing a property tax credit for high performance dwellings built on or after July 1, 2010 that meet or exceed USGBC LEED Silver standards. The credit was amended in 2012 (County Bill 03-12) to add the National Green Building Standard (NGBS) as an eligible green building certification system for the tax credit. The tax credit is available for five years and is calculated as a percentage of the county property taxes owed on the dwelling (but not the land). The incentive amount and maximum incentive vary according to the performance level of the building as determined under the applicable rating system, as follows:
|Anne Arundel County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Includes zoning provisions for small wind systems.|
|Appalachian States Low-Level Radioactive Waste Compact (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||This legislation authorizes Maryland's entrance into the Appalachian States Low-Level Radioactive Waste Compact, which seeks to promote interstate cooperation for the proper management and disposal of low-level radioactive wastes. The Commission that administers the compact is also responsible for conducting research and recommending regulations pertaining to radioactive waste. The states of Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia are party to this compact. The compact is designed so that each state in turn assumes the responsibility of the host state for the receipt and disposal of low-level radioactive waste. Pennsylvania is currently the host state.|
|Appropriation or Use of Waters, Reservoirs, and Dams (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||It is state policy to control the use and appropriation of ground and surface waters of the state. A permit from the Department of the Environment is required prior to the construction or operation of any plant, building, or structure that will appropriate or use any waters of the state. The applicant must provide the Department that the proposed water withdrawal will not jeopardize the State's natural water resources. Some exemptions – including for domestic water use, agricultural use of less than 10,000 gallons per day on average, and groundwater use of 5,000 gallons of water per day or less – apply. Permits from the Department are likewise required prior to the construction, alteration, or repair of any reservoir, dam, or waterway obstruction. Some exemptions apply. This legislation contains additional information on exemptions, required information notices and public hearings, Department considerations in acting on permit applications, measuring and reporting of water use, compliance, and additional regulations.|
|Baltimore County - Property Tax Credit for High Performance Buildings and Homes (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||The state of Maryland permits local governments (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-242) to offer property tax credits for high performance buildings if they choose to do so. Baltimore County exercised this option in 2006 by creating property tax credits for new and existing multi-family residential (50+ units) and commercial buildings that meet certain high performance building standards. In 2008, the county also adopted a similar provision creating property tax credits for newly constructed high performance homes, and in 2010 added provisions for energy efficiency improvements in existing homes.
The credit is formulated as a percentage (%) reduction in total county real property taxes assessed on the property over the course of several years. The level and duration of the allowable credit varies according to building type and level of performance. The non-residential property tax credits are based wholly on achieving a specified rating and certification under the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED green building rating system. The property tax credit for homes also uses green building rating systems as a qualification standard, but includes an additional track that allows a home to qualify for a credit based on its level of efficiency as compared to an energy use baseline. The credit for high performance homes originally required a minimum LEED for Homes rating, but the law was amended during 2012 to allow homes rated under the the International Code Council (ICC) NGBS to qualify. Both standards include not only single-family homes, but also attached housing, and low-rise (up to 6 stories), multi-family condominiums and rental housing. The table below summarizes the different tax credit levels and durations for different building types.
|Baltimore County - Solar and Geothermal Equipment Property Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||No||Local||The allocated budget for this program has been met. There is now a wait list for new credits. The wait for applications not yet received is expected to last until at least July 2015. Md. Property Tax Article § 9-203 allows local governments to offer property tax credits for energy conservation devices if they choose to do so. This credit, available only for residential buildings, is set at the lesser of 50% of the cost of the system or $5,000 for heating devices and $1,500 for devices that supply hot water. There is no dollar limit on credits for PV or cooling systems, although the credit claimed each year cannot exceed the amount of county property taxes owed during that year. Excess credits can be carried over for 2 years.|
|Baltimore County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Provides permitting process for anemometers only (not turbines)|
|Bio-Heating Oil Tax Credit (Corporate) (Maryland)||Maryland||Corporate Tax Credit||Yes||State/Territory||Maryland allows individuals and corporations to take an income tax credit of $0.03/gallon for purchases of biodiesel used for space heating or water heating. The maximum credit is $500 per year. It may not be refunded or carried over to subsequent years. In order to qualify for the tax credit, the heating oil must be at least 5% biodiesel sourced from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved feedstocks or be accepted under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard. As originally enacted, the credit was only available for purchases made during the 2008 - 2012 tax years, but this was extended by 5 years through 2017 by S.B. 959 in May 2011. This legislation also modified the definition of qualifying heating oil to insert the language described above pertaining to approved feedstocks and the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard.
Please see the program web site for an application and instructions on claiming this tax credit.
|Bio-Heating Oil Tax Credit (Personal) (Maryland)||Maryland||Personal Tax Credit||Yes||State/Territory||Maryland allows individuals and corporations to take an income tax credit of $0.03/gallon for purchases of biodiesel used for space heating or water heating. The maximum credit is $500 per year. It may not be refunded or carried over to subsequent years. In order to qualify for the tax credit, the heating oil must be at least 5% biodiesel sourced from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved feedstocks or be accepted under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard. As originally enacted, the credit was only available for purchases made during the 2008 - 2012 tax years, but this was extended by 5 years through June 2018 by S.B. 959 in May 2011. This legislation also modified the definition of qualifying heating oil to insert the language described above pertaining to approved feedstocks and the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard.
Please see the program web site for an application and instructions on claiming this tax credit.
|Businesses that Create New Jobs Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Corporate Tax Incentive||Yes||State/Province||Businesses located in Maryland that create new positions and establish or expand business facilities in the state may be entitled to a Businesses that Create New Jobs Tax Credit. To be eligible, businesses must first have been granted a property tax credit by a local government for creating the new jobs. The credit may be taken against corporate income tax, personal income tax or insurance premium tax. The business must create at least 25 new positions as part of the new or expanded business facility, 5,000 square feet or more, in Maryland.|
|Calvert County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Zoning regulations for wind power systems|
|Caroline County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance amends Chapter 175 of the Code of Public Local Laws of Caroline County, Maryland to provide for the erection, maintenance, and operation of small wind energy systems, as well as outlining guidelines and requirements for these systems.|
|Carroll County - Green Building Property Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||The state of Maryland permits Carroll County (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-308(e)) to offer property tax credits for high performance buildings if it chooses to do so.* Carroll County has exercised this option by offering property tax credits on buildings used for business, commercial, or industrial purposes that meet certain green building standards. The tax credits apply to green buildings that meet the requisite standards and are certified as such after May 5, 2009. The tax credit sunsets June 30, 2014 and no new credits will be issued after this date.
The tax credit uses the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system and the Green Building Institute's Green Globe rating system as a metric for determining how "green" a building is. Buildings must receive a minimum LEED Silver or two Green Globes certification in order to be eligible for any tax credit. An equivalent certification under a county recognized system may also be used to qualify for the property tax credit. The property tax credit is determined as a percentage of county property taxes levied against the improved real property, and may be claimed for five consecutive years. Tax credit levels are as follows:
*The state authorization contained in Md Code: Property Tax § 9-308(e) applies specifically to Carroll County. Several other counties in Maryland have adopted property tax credits for high performance buildings under another more generally applicable portion of the state code which makes a similar allowance (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-242).
|Carroll County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance sets forth regulations for the zoning, erection, and operation of small wind energy systems in Carroll County, Maryland.|
|Charles County - Agricultural Preservation Districts - Renewable Generation Allowed (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Charles County provides that producing energy "from solar, wind, biomass, and farm waste and residue crops" is a permitted agricultural use in areas zoned as Agricultural Preservation Districts.|
|Chesapeake Bay Preservation Programs (Multiple States)||Maryland
|Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||The Chesapeake Bay Program is a unique regional partnership that has led and directed the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay since 1983. The Chesapeake Bay Program partners include the states of Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia; the District of Columbia; the Chesapeake Bay Commission, a tri-state legislative body; the Environmental Protection Agency, representing the federal government; and participating citizen advisory groups.
The Chesapeake Executive Council was established by the Chesapeake Bay Agreement of 1983. Under the 1987 Chesapeake Bay Agreement, membership changed from cabinet secretaries to the governors of Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia; the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; the mayor of the District of Columbia; and the chair of the Chesapeake Bay Commission, a legislative body serving Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
The Council: (a) Establishes the policy direction for the restoration and protection of the Bay and its living resources; (b) Exerts leadership to marshal public support for the Bay effort; (c) Signs directives, agreements and amendments that set goals and guide policy for Bay restoration; and (d) Is accountable to the public for progress made under the Bay agreements.The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality administers complementary programs and regulations to prevent future pollution and degradation of the Chesapeake Bay and surrounding lands. More information can be found here: http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Water/ChesapeakeBay.aspx
|Chesapeake Bay and Tributaries (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||Local||This legislation sets limits on development near Chesapeake Bay as well as on dredging and the deposition of dredged material into the bay. The legislation establishes the Cox Creek Citizens Oversight Committee (now mostly defunct); the Hart-Miller-Pleasure Island Oversight Committee, which provides oversight and monitoring of the future development, use, and maintenance of the Hart-Miller-Pleasure Island chain, and the water quality in the area immediately surrounding the islands; the Kent Island Citizens Oversight Committee (now defunct).|
|Chesapeake Forest Lands (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||The Chesapeake Forest Lands are most of the former land holdings of the Chesapeake Forest Products Company, which now includes more than 66,000 acres in five lower Eastern Shore counties. These lands make up 12 percent of the productive forests in the region, which in the past produced 15-20 percent of the region's annual timber harvest.
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources manages the land, and periodically updates the Sustainable Forest Management Plan. The plan includes information on powerline right-of-ways, protected areas, and acceptable uses for the area.
The state bought the land for the purpose of supporting the Eastern Shore's forest products industry, the second largest industry on the Eastern Shore, which adds $349 million to the State's economy and employs more than 2,100 people. The purposes is also to maintain the ecological integrity of the area, including water quality and habitat.The Department involves the public in the management plan development, which is reviewed every couple of years. The public's comments will be considered as plans are developed for resource management, watershed enhancement, facility development or public use.
|Clean Energy Procurement (Maryland)||Maryland||Green Power Purchasing||Yes||State/Territory||Maryland's Governor issued an executive order on March 13, 2001 calling for at least 6% of the electricity consumed by state-owned facilities to be generated from "green" energy sources, such as wind, solar, landfill gas, and other biomass resources. The order specifies that no more than 50% of the power procured to meet the requirement come from municipal solid waste facilities.
Subsequently in 2009 the state embarked upon an initiative with the University System of Maryland, termed "Clean Energy Horizons", to contract for renewable energy through long-term power purchase agreements with clean energy developers. In December 2009 the Maryland Department of General Services (DGS) approved four contracts (see press release) that are anticipated to eventually supply up to 20% of the electricity needs of state agencies and the university system. The long-term agreements include both electricity and renewable energy credits (RECs), with a stipulation that the facilities come on-line by the end of 2014. The state reportedly intends to allow county, university and municipal partners access to the contracts to make their own renewable electricity purchases. The DGS has also installed renewable energy systems at several state buildings and in October 2011 issued an RFP (see press release) for up to 10 MW of electricity from animal waste energy facilities (e.g., poultry litter, livestock manure).In another area, the order calls for a reduction in energy use in state buildings of 10% by 2005 and 15% by 2010, and requires all new energy-using products to carry the "Energy Star" label or "be in the top 25% of energy-efficiency when labeled products are unavailable." The Executive Order also makes it easier for the State to purchase alternative-fuel and low-emission vehicles for its fleet.
|Clean Energy Production Tax Credit (Corporate) (Maryland)||Maryland||Corporate Tax Credit||Yes||State/Territory||Maryland offers a production tax credit for electricity generated by wind, solar energy, hydropower, hydrokinetic, municipal solid waste and biomass resources. Eligible biomass resources include anaerobic digestion, landfill gas, wastewater-treatment gas, and cellulosic material derived from forest-related resources (excluding old-growth timber and mill residues consisting of sawdust or wood shavings)*, from waste pallets and crates, or from agricultural sources. The list of eligible resources is generally the same as those eligible for the federal renewable electricity production tax credit (PTC), except the Maryland law contains added provisions related to biomass and biogas technologies.
* Eligible mill residues include bark, chips, slabs, and edging, although slabs and edging are usually made into chips.
|Clean Energy Production Tax Credit (Personal) (Maryland)||Maryland||Personal Tax Credit||Yes||State/Territory||Maryland offers a production tax credit for electricity generated by wind, solar energy, hydropower, hydrokinetic, municipal solid waste and biomass resources. Eligible biomass resources include anaerobic digestion, landfill gas, wastewater-treatment gas, and non-hazardous segregated waste material derived from forest-related resources (excluding old-growth timber and mill residues consisting of sawdust or wood shavings)*, from waste pallets and crates, or from agricultural sources. The list of eligible resources is generally the same as those eligible for the federal renewable electricity production tax credit (PTC), except the Maryland law contains added provisions related to biomass and biogas technologies.
* Eligible mill residues include bark, chips, slabs, and edging, although slabs and edging are usually made into chips.
|Clean Energy Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Personal Tax Incentives||Yes||State/Province||The Clean Energy Tax Credit is 0.85 cents for each kilowatt hour of electricity sold that was produced from a Maryland qualified energy resource during the 5-year period specified in the initial credit certification. The annual tax credit may not exceed one-fifth of the maximum amount of credit stated in the initial credit certificate.
The business must produce electricity during the tax year using primarily "qualified energy resources" (see Internal Revenue Code Section 45) which includes any solid, non-hazardous, cellulosic waste material that is segregated from other waste materials and is derived from the following:
• Forest-related resources, including mill residues (except sawdust and wood shavings), forest thinnings, slash, or brush, but excluding old-growth timber.
• Waste pallets, crates, dunnage, landscape or right-of-way trimmings.
• Agricultural sources (orchard tree crops, vineyard, grain, legumes, sugar, and other crop by-products or residues)."Qualified energy resources" also includes methane gas or other combustible gases resulting from the decomposition of organic materials from an agricultural operation or from a landfill or a wastewater treatment plant using either anaerobic or thermal decomposition, or a combination of both, and solar, geothermal or hydropower energy sources.
|Clean-Burning Wood Stove Grant Program (Maryland)||Maryland||State Rebate Program||Yes||State/Territory||The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) now offers the Clean Burning Wood Stove Grant program as part of its Residential Clean Energy Grant Program. The Clean Burning Wood Stove Grant program offers a flat grant award of $500 for stick burning wood stoves and $700 for pellet burning wood stoves that meet program eligibility requirements.
Basic requirements for grant funding include:
Grants are allocated on a first come/first served basis across technologies, and are subject to change in amount and existence based on funding availability.* A full list of program details and requirements can be found on the program web site listed above.
|Climate Action Plan (Maryland)||Maryland||Climate Policies||Yes||State/Province||On April 20, 2007, Governor Martin O’Malley signed Executive Order 01.01.2007.07 establishing the Maryland Climate Change Commission (MCCC) charged with collectively developing an action plan to address the causes of climate change, prepare for the likely consequences and impacts of climate change to Maryland, and establish firm benchmarks and timetables for implementing the Commission’s recommendations.
The Commission included members representing academia, business, industry, environmental groups and many levels of government. It was staffed jointly by the Maryland Department of the Environment and Department of Natural Resources in coordination with other state agencies.One of the Plan’s policy recommendations, to adopt science-based regulatory goals to reduce Maryland’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, was realized with the passage of the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act of 2009 (GGRA). The law requires Maryland to reduce its GHG emissions to 25 percent below 2006 levels by 2020. It directs the Maryland Department of the Environment to work with other lead State agencies to prepare an implementation plan to meet this goal as a first step toward achieving longer term science-based reductions. An interim plan will be submitted to the Governor and the General Assembly during the 2012 legislative session, and the final plan (GGRA Plan) will be submitted on or before December 31, 2012.
|Coal Combustion By-Products (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||The Department of the Environment is responsible for regulating fugitive air emissions from the transportation of coal combustion by-products and the permissible beneficial uses of these by-products in the State. This legislation restricts the siting of new refuse disposal systems accepting coal combustion by-products in critical natural resource areas (defined in Natural Resources Article, 8-1802, Annotated Code of Maryland).|
|Coastal Facilities Review Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||This Act aims to preserve Maryland's coastal areas and to balance competing demands for resources by requiring environmental impact evaluations to be conducted prior to the approval of the construction or operation of certain facilities. Such review complements the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, which establishes a comprehensive plan for the proper use and development of energy resources in coastal areas. This Act applies to pipelines carrying crude oil or natural gas from offshore sources; facilities for the processing, transmission, or storage of natural gas with a total design capacity for at least one billion cubic feet of gas for storage or 200 million cubic feet for processing; operations bases and fabrication yards; and other facilities storing or processing petroleum resources. See subtitle 22.|
|Commercial Clean Energy Grant Program (Maryland)||Maryland||State Rebate Program||Yes||State/Territory||The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) offeres grants for mid-sized photovoltaic (PV) systems, solar water heating systems (SWH) and Geothermal Heating & Cooling (GHC) installed by businesses, non-profits, and local governments. Funding is available on first-come, first-serve basis and is subject to change based on funding availability.
|Community Development Block Grant/Economic Development Infrastructure Financing (United States)||United States||Grant Program
|Yes||Federal||Community Development Block Grant/Economic Development Infrastructure Financing (CDBG/EDIF) provides public infrastructure financing to help communities grow jobs, enable new business startups and expansions for existing businesses. State programs help achieve the national objective of CDBG by funding projects in which at least 51 percent of the new jobs created are made available to low and moderate income individuals. The maximum amounts awarded under the program are $1 million for new businesses locating to the state and $500,000 for existing businesses expanding in the state.|
|Contract Financing Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Loan Program||Yes||State/Province||The Contract Financing Program, administered by the Maryland Small Business Development Authority, provides financial assistance to eligible businesses in the form of a direct loan or the guaranty of loans made by a financial institution. The funds may be used for working capital, equipment purchase, and to complete work on contracts where a majority of the funds are provided by federal, state, local government, or a utility regulated by the Public Service Commission. Financing is limited to $1,000,000.|
|Critical Areas of State Concern (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||This legislation designates the Chesapeake Bay, other Atlantic Coastal Bays, and their tributaries and adjacent lands as critical areas of state concern. It is state policy to protect these areas and to prevent the further degradation of water quality. Further development of non-water dependent structures and increase in lot coverage in these areas is presumed to be contrary to the policy of the state, and construction is therefore restricted in these areas. For the purpose of this legislation, "Critical Area" includes all land within 1,000 feet of the Mean High Water Line of tidal waters or the landward edge of tidal wetlands and all waters of and lands under the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.|
|Dam Safety Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Safety and Operational Guidelines
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||State/Province||The Dam Safety Division within the Department of the Environment is responsible for administering a dam safety program to regulate the construction, operation, and maintenance of dams to prevent dam failures and protect environmental resources. Permits are required for the construction and modification of structures, and dams are reviewed based on their assigned hazard rating.|
|Development near Wetlands and Waterways (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||The Wetlands and Waterways Program requires permits for commercial activity or development proposed on or near a wetland or waterway. For the purpose of the permitting process, major projects are defined as projects that will permanently impact 5,000 square feet or more of wetlands or waterways, including the 100-year floodplain and are located in an area identified as potentially impacting a nontidal wetland of special State concern. Major and minor projects permits are subject to varying application fees and approval processes. Section 5-901 et seq. off the Environment Article contains more specific information on application and permit procedures. More information on nontidal wetlands classifications: http://www.mde.maryland.gov/programs/researchcenter/factsheets/waterfactsheet/documents/www.mde.state.md.us/assets/document/wetlandswaterways/classification.pdf More information, Maryland Nontidal Wetland Mitigation Guidance: http://www.mde.maryland.gov/programs/water/wetlandsandwaterways/aboutwetlands/documents/www.mde.state.md.us/assets/document/wetlandswaterways/mitguidefeb72011.pdf|
|Dorchester County - Renewable Zoning (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Dorchester County zoning codes specifically permit solar arrays and small wind turbines in many zoning districts.|
|Dorchester County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance amends Chapter 155 of the Dorchester County Zoning Ordinance in order to add small wind energy systems as an accessory use in all zoning districts.|
|Flood Control and Watershed Management (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||Counties and towns are required to issue permits for development within the 100-year floodplain. Development is broadly defined to include any man-made change to land, including grading, filling, dredging, extraction, storage, subdivision of land, and the construction or improvement of structures. The Department of the Environment is responsible for developing and administering a program to minimize the risk of flooding in the state, providing assistance to local governments, and implementing relevant regulations. Separate flood management plans are typically devised for each watershed by local governments in consultation with the Department and associated state agencies. Flood management plans typically involve some restrictions on development in flood zones, especially in 100-year floodplains. Special regulations apply to the Jones Falls watershed in Baltimore County.|
|Focus Area Tax Credits (Maryland)||Maryland||Enterprise Zone||Yes||Local||Focus Area Tax Credits for businesses in Baltimore City or Prince George’s County enterprise zones include: (1) Ten-year, 80% credit against local real property taxes on a portion of real property improvements. (2) Ten-year, 80% credit against local personal property taxes on new investment in personal property. (3) A one-time $1,500 income tax credit per new employee. For economically disadvantaged employees, the credit is $9,000 per employee over three years.|
|Forest Conservation Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||State/Province||The main purpose of Maryland's Forest Conservation Act is to minimize the loss of Maryland's forest resources during land development by making the identification and protection of forests and other sensitive areas an integral part of the site planning process. The Act requires units of local government with planning and zoning authority to establish and implement local forest conservation programs. These regulations address state approval of and aid to local programs, as well as the state forest conservation program.|
|Forestry Policies (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||Maryland's forests are managed by the Department of Natural Resources, Forest Service Division. The Forest Service issued in 2010 its Forest Strategy Document:
In 2009 The State issued the Sustainable Forestry Act, which includes discussion of new forest markets including renewable energy development through biomass energy. In 2010 The Sustainable Forestry Council, created by the Sustainable Forestry Act, issued "Wood Energy Potential in Maryland":
Currently the primary policy drivers for Maryland woody biomass energy are the state's Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) and the Maryland Clean Energy Production Tax Credit. Maryland's RPS considers wood waste and black liquor (a wood products processing byproduct) as "Tier 1" renewable resources under the RPS criteria, and in 2008 68% of the Renewable Energy Credit (REC) market in the state came from these resources.
In 2010 The Pinchot Institute for Conservation issued "The Potential for Sustainable Wood-based bioenergy in Maryland", a document reviewing the availability of woody biomass resources in the state, as well as identification of technologies appropriate for energy conversion of these different resources, and a thorough discussion of the energy policy drivers in the state with regard to woody biomass markets:
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources together with the Pinchot Institute for Conservation issued in 2010 "A Guide to Forest Biomass Harvesting and Retention in Maryland", which provides guidelines for sustainable woody biomass harvest for energy generation:http://www.pinchot.org/uploads/download?fileId=915
|Frederick County - Green Building Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Green Building Incentive||Yes||Local||Frederick County administers a green building program. It has two goals: (1) to ensure that County building projects implement strategies that enhance environmental performance and fiscal efficiencies; and (2) to encourage sustainable design in private sector developments to facilitate a positive environmental legacy for Frederick County|
|Frederick County - Solar Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance permits solar arrays in any zoning district in Frederick County under the conditions that the total square footage of the array does not exceed that of the principle structure and the footprint of an individual array does not exceed the greater of (1)one-half of the footprint of the principle structure or (2)600 square feet.|
|Frederick County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance sets standards for permitted wind energy systems in Frederick County, Maryland.|
|Fuel Mix and Emissions Disclosure (Maryland)||Maryland||Generation Disclosure||Yes||State/Territory||Maryland’s 1999 electric utility restructuring legislation requires all electric companies and electricity suppliers to provide customers with details regarding the fuel mix and emissions of electric generation. Emissions data must be expressed in terms of pounds per megawatt-hour (MWh). This information must be provided to customers every six months and annually to the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC). Past reports are available in Case No. 8738 through the PSC's Case File Search web page. Current supplier reports are also posted on company web sites.|
|Gas Companies Right-of-Way (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||Corporations engaged in the business of transmitting or supplying natural gas, artificial gas, or a mixture of natural and artificial gases may acquire by condemnation the rights-of-way or easements necessary to lay, construct, modify, repair, maintain, operate, and remove pipelines and appurtenances to pipelines for transmitting and supplying gas.|
|Gas and Oil (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||The Department of the Environment has the authority to enact regulations pertaining to oil and gas production, but it cannot prorate or limit the output of any gas or oil well. A permit from the Department is required prior to the drilling of a well for exploration, production, or underground storage of oil or gas. An environmental assessment must be submitted along with the permit application, and the Department may deny permits that propose drilling which may pose a substantial threat to public safety or significant adverse environmental impacts. Legislation encourages the development of oil and gas resources in Maryland, and contains provisions to mitigate environmental impacts from oil and gas production. This legislation contains additional information on permitting, well drilling and siting, fees, the use of explosives, gas metering, and coalbed methane production. Drilling for oil or gas is prohibited in the Chesapeake Bay, any of its tributaries, or the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area.|
|Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Act requires the Department of the Environment to publish and update an inventory of statewide greenhouse gas emissions for calendar year 2006 and requires the State to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by 25% from 2006 levels by 2020. The State is also required to develop and adopt a specified plan, adopt specified regulations, and implement specified programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.|
|Harford County - Property Tax Credit for Solar and Geothermal Devices (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||Harford County offers a tax credit from real property taxes imposed on residential buildings, nonresidential buildings, or other structures that use solar or geothermal devices for heating, cooling, water heating or generating electricity for on-site consumption. The credit amount is equal to one year of total real property taxes or $2,500 per device, whichever is less. In September 2010 the county added a provision limiting total credits to $5,000 per property per fiscal year. Total real property taxes include all real property taxes that would have been paid by the taxpayer for that year for the host building or structure, but not on the land. The original 2006 credit applied only to solar heating and cooling devices and had a limit of $1,000. Subsequent 2007 amendments added geothermal devices as an eligible technology, electricity generation as an eligible end-use, and increased the maximum credit to $2,500.
In order to qualify for a tax credit, devices must meet national safety and performance standards as set by a nationally recognized testing laboratory for that type of device. A one-time application must be submitted to the Harford County Director of Administration on or before October 1 prior to the taxable year for which the credit is sought. The total volume of tax credits allowed for any one year was formerly limited to $150,000, but this limit was been raised to $250,000 effective July 1, 2010. Credits will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis with applications that exceed the annual limit carried over to succeeding years. Unused credits may be carried forward for up to two years. The application is available at the web site above.
|Harford County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance creates regulations and standards for the erection and operation of small wind energy systems in Harford County, Maryland.|
|Hazardous Material Security (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||All facilities processing, storing, managing, or transporting hazardous materials must be evaluated every five years for security issues. A report must be submitted to the Department of the Environment. The Department is authorized to adopt and implement regulations pertaining to hazardous waste security issues.|
|Hazardous Materials and Controlled Hazardous Substances (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||A permit is required to own, establish, operate, or maintain a facility in the state of Maryland that transfers quantities of a single hazardous material in excess of 100,000 pounds at any time during a calendar year. The Department of the Environment is responsible for administrative oversight of such facilities and their operations, and for enacting relevant regulations. Section 7-201 et seq. Of this legislation applies to low-level nuclear waste and other substances that the Department of the Environment may choose to define under this subtitle. Facilities defined as managing controlled hazardous substances include nuclear waste facilities and may include operating landfills. The Department has the authority to issue, modify, and revoke orders and permits pertaining to hazardous waste facilities, generation, and discharges, and sets operational and design standards for hazardous waste facilities. This legislation contains more specific information on the application and permitting process, and the transportation of hazardous waste. A separate permit is required for each facility. This legislation also establishes an Advisory Council to assist the Department in developing rules and regulations pertaining to controlled hazardous substances. The establishment or operation of a high-level nuclear waste facility for the treatment, permanent storage, or disposal of any high-level nuclear waste or transuranic waste is prohibited, except by federal, state, and local public agencies.|
|Hazardous Waste Facility Siting Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||The Hazardous Waste Facilities Siting Board is responsible for overseeing the siting of hazardous waste facilities in Maryland, and will treat hazardous waste facilities separately from low-level nuclear waste facilities. This legislation describes the factors considered by the Board in making siting decisions. The Board is authorized to enact rules and regulations pertaining to the siting of hazardous and low-level nuclear waste facilities.|
|Healthy Air Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Maryland Healthy Air Act was developed with the purpose of bringing Maryland into attainment with the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone and fine particulate matter by the federal deadline of 2010. The act and the subsequent regulations also requires the reduction of mercury emissions from coal-fired electric generating units and significantly reduces atmospheric deposition of nitrogen to the Chesapeake Bay and other waters of the State. Additional regulations address general emission standards and registration and reporting requirements.|
|Howard County - High Performance and Green Building Property Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||The state of Maryland permits local governments (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-242) to offer property tax credits for high performance buildings and energy conservation devices (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-203) if they choose to do so. Howard County has exercised this option by offering property tax credits for new and existing multi-family residential and commercial buildings that meet certain high performance building standards, and for the installation of energy conservation devices in LEED-certified structures. The property tax credit for energy conservation devices in green buildings (the Green Building Tax Credit) was initially enacted in 2002, while the High Performance Building Tax Credit was enacted in 2007 (effective beginning in July 2008). Minor amendments were made in 2009 to update the High Performance Buildings Tax Credit to reflect current green building standards. More substantive amendments were made in December 2011 to extend the property tax credit to residential structures classified as R-2 or R-3 under the Howard County Building Code, effective for tax years beginning after June 30, 2012 and extending through June 30, 2017.
|Howard County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance sets up provisions for allowing small wind energy systems in various zoning districts.|
|Interconnection Standards (Maryland)||Maryland||Interconnection||Yes||State/Territory||In April 2007, Maryland enacted legislation (S.B. 595) requiring the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) to form a small generator interconnection working group to develop interconnection standards and procedures that are "consistent with nationally adopted interconnection standards and procedures," and to revise the state's interconnection standards and procedures on or before November 1, 2007. Final rules were adopted in March 2008 and became effective June 9, 2008.
The new rules apply to interconnections of all types of distributed generation systems of less than 10 MW to the electric distribution system for all types of utilities -- investor-owned utilities, rural cooperatives and municipal utilities. They employ a four-tiered approach to determine the level of review required before a system may be connected to the grid. Different levels of review are subject to specific technical screens, review procedures, and time lines. Generally speaking, the review process becomes more extensive and time consuming with increasing system size. Below are the basic criteria* for determining the level of review required for a prospective project.
Lab certified equipment is defined to mean equipment tested and approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory (NRTL) as being in accordance with IEEE 1547, UL 1741, and the National Electric Code (NEC). Field approved systems are generally non-certified systems that have been tested and approved under a prior review by a utility, subject to certain other restrictions. All interconnected systems must be equipped with a utility accessible “lockable isolation device” or alternately, a “draw-out type circuit breaker with a provision for padlocking at the draw-out position”. This requirement is equivalent to “lockable external disconnect switch” frequently specified in other jurisdictions.
Utilities may not charge any processing fees to Level 1 applicants and processing fees are limited to $50 plus $1/kilowatt (kW) of capacity for Level 2 requests and $100 plus $2/kW of capacity for Level 3 and 4 requests. Utilities are also required to designate a contact person and provide assistance materials on their website for use by prospective applicants. Standardized interconnection agreements are available on the PSC renewable portfolio standard website for all levels of interconnection request. The regulations also contain provisions for dispute resolution and utility reporting requirements.
The issue of insurance additional insurance requirements is not addressed by the regulations. However, the standard Level 1 interconnection agreement specifically states that applicants are not required to obtain general liability insurance as a condition of interconnection approval. For Levels 2, 3 and 4 the interconnection agreement requires liability insurance of at least $2 million per occurrence and $4 million in aggregate for systems of 1 MW or larger. It also specifies that the policy must name the utility as an additional insured party. A separate standard agreement exists for Maryland state and local government entities, which among other things contains modifications to liability insurance requirements that accommodate self-insured entities.
*The general descriptions here are not a comprehensive listing of all testing and review criteria. Please see the actual rules for more details and additional restrictions that may apply.
|Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin (Multiple States)||District of Columbia
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||Local||The Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin's (ICPRB) mission is to enhance, protect, and conserve the water and associated land resources of the Potomac River and its tributaries through regional and interstate cooperation. The IPCRB administers an interstate compact, authorized by Congress in 1940, which aims to help the Potomac basin states and the federal government to enhance, protect, and conserve the water and associated land resources of the Potomac River basin. The Commission is responsible for regulating and controlling pollution impacts and water uses. The Commission provides planning coordination for the development and use of the water and associated land resources through cooperation with, and support and coordination of, the activities of federal, state, local and private agencies, groups, and interests concerned with the development, utilization and conservation of the water and associated land resources.|
|Interstate Mining Compact (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||This legislation authorizes the state's entrance into the Interstate Mining Compact, a multi-state governmental agency / organization that represents the natural resource and related environmental protection interests of its member states. Currently, 23 states are members to the compact, and 6 additional states are associate members. The compact is administered by the Interstate Mining Compact Commission, which does not possess regulatory powers but “provides a forum for interstate action and communication on issues of concern to the member states” and thus aids the development of effective regulatory programs and environmental protection initiatives.|
|Interstate Mining Compact Commission (multi-state)||Alabama
|Safety and Operational Guidelines
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||State/Province||The Interstate Mining Compact is a multi-state governmental agency / organization that represents the natural resource and related environmental protection interests of its member states. Currently, 23 states are members to the compact, and 6 additional states are associate members. The compact is administered by the Interstate Mining Compact Commission, which does not possess regulatory powers but “provides a forum for interstate action and communication on issues of concern to the member states” and thus aids the development of effective regulatory programs and environmental protection initiatives. The Commission exercises several powers on behalf of the states, all of which are of a study, recommendatory or consultative nature. The Commission does not possess regulatory powers, as some Compacts do. The Commission provides a forum for interstate action and communication on issues of concern to the member states. It is the potential to stimulate the development and production of each state's mineral wealth through effective regulatory programs that draws many of the states together in the prosecution of the Commission's work. Given the environmental sensitivities associated with this objective, a significant portion of the Commission's work is dedicated to the environmental protection issues naturally associated with this mineral development. It is the significant value and clout that comes from "compacting" together and speaking with a strong, united voice that can make a difference in each state's efforts to implement effective regulatory programs that will conserve natural resources and secure a vibrant state (and thus national) mineral economy.|
|Interstate Oil and Gas Conservation Compact (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||This legislation authorizes the State to join the Interstate Compact for the Conservation of Oil and Gas. The Compact is an agreement that has been entered into by 30 oil- and gas-producing states, as well as eight associate states and 10 international affiliates (including seven Canadian provinces). Members participate in the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, which functions as a forum for governors, state appointees and key policy staff focusing on key oil and natural gas issues, and tracks, evaluates, and disseminates information on state activities and best practices.|
|Interstate Oil and Gas Conservation Compact (Multiple States)||Alabama
|Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission assists member states efficiently maximize oil and natural gas resources through sound regulatory practices while protecting the nation's health, safety and the environment.
The Commission serves as the collective voice of member governors on oil and gas issues and advocates states' rights to govern petroleum resources within their borders.
The Commission formed the Geological CO2 Sequestration Task Force, which examines the technical, policy and regulatory issues related to safe and effective storage of CO2 in the subsurface (depleted oil and natural gas fields, saline formations and coal beds).
The Commission also funds research on hydraulic fracking, reusing water used in extracting oil and gas, and makes recommendations on national energy policies and statutes for individual states.The Commission also has several associate states: North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Missouri, Idaho, Oregon and Washington. In addition, it has international affiliations with the Canadian provinces of Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, and the Yukon.
|Jane E. Lawton Conservation Loan Program (Maryland)||Maryland||State Loan Program||Yes||State/Territory||The Jane E. Lawton Conservation Loan Program takes the place of the former Community Energy Loan Program (CELP) and the Energy Efficiency and Economic Development Loan Program (EEEDLP). This program provides local governments, nonprofits, and businesses in the State with an opportunity to reduce their operating expenses by identifying and installing cost-effective energy conservation improvements. It allows borrowers to use the cost savings generated by the improvements as the primary source of revenue for repaying the loans. The program operates as a revolving loan fund where loan repayments from prior awards replenish the fund and allow it to support additional projects. Projects may include renewable installations such as solar hot water or geothermal heat pumps that can meet program guidelines.
Repayments and interest earned by the fund will allow the program to continue making loans for the foreseeable future. To date the program has reportedly issued more than 50 loan awards providing a total of roughly $21 million for projects across the state. These figures include loans made under the prior programs that the Lawton Loan Program replaced.
|Job Creation Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Corporate Tax Incentive||Yes||State/Province||The Job Creation Tax Credit provides a $1000 tax credit to businesses that create new jobs; the credit is 2.5% of the aggregate annual wages for all newly created full-time positions. This credit is increased to five percent in revitalization zones, up to $1500 per job. Credits may not exceed $1 million per year and may be carried forward for five years. Sixty jobs must be created during a 24-month period. Eligible businesses include public utilities. In a “Priority Funding Area,” a business needs only to create a minimum of 25 new positions.|
|Kent County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance establishes provisions and standards for small wind energy systems in various zoning districts in Kent County, Maryland.|
|Local Option - Clean Energy Loan Program (Maryland)||Maryland||PACE Financing||Yes||State/Territory||Note: The Federal Housing Financing Agency (FHFA) issued a statement in July 2010 concerning the senior lien status associated with most PACE programs. In response to the FHFA statement, most local PACE programs have been suspended until further clarification is provided.
Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing effectively allows property owners to borrow money to pay for energy improvements. The amount borrowed is typically repaid via a special assessment on the property over a period of years. Maryland has authorized local governments to establish such programs, as described below. (Not all local governments in Maryland offer PACE financing; contact your local government to find out if it has established a PACE financing program.)
In May 2009, Maryland enacted legislation permitting counties and municipal corporations to adopt resolutions or ordinances establishing clean energy loan programs based on the "PACE" model. The legislation includes provisions permitting local governments to issue bonds to fund such financing programs. If adopted by a local governing body, the program allows local property owners to opt in to a renewable energy or eligible energy-efficiency loan program and repay the loan through a surcharge on their property tax bill. The surcharge remains attached to the property upon a change in ownership and is limited to the amount needed to recover costs associated with issuing bonds, financing the loans, and administering the program.The authorizing legislation describes a series of details that must be included in the local legislation implementing such financing programs, although specific details are largely left at the discretion of the local government. Local governments may generally specify property owner eligibility, eligible improvements or technologies, and loan terms and conditions. However, the state legislation specifically prohibits commercial renewable energy projects larger than 100 kilowatts from participating in local clean energy loan programs. In addition, it dictates that local eligibility requirements for property owners address their ability to repay a loan through a process similar to mortgage loan approval. For a bond issuance, the local government may specify the principal amount, interest rate/variable rate, terms of sale, payment intervals, conditions for redemption before maturity, and other details as necessary. Bonds (serial or term) issued under this provision must mature no later than 40 years after their issue date.
|Local Option - Property Tax Credit for High Performance Buildings (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||State/Territory||Similar to Maryland's Local Option Property Tax Credit for Renewable Energy, Title 9 of Maryland's property tax code creates an optional property tax credit for high performance buildings. This statute allows counties and municipalities to provide a credit against the property tax for buildings which achieve at least a silver rating according to the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED standards, residential structures that achieve a silver rating under the International Code Council's National Green Building Standard (NGBS), or structures which meet other comparable green building ratings or guidelines approved by the State. The provision specifically adding the NGBS (as opposed to the general language regarding "comparable" systems) was adopted by H.B. 158 in 2012, effective for tax years beginning after June 30, 2012.
The counties or municipalities which elect to provide this property tax credit may determine the amount of the property tax credit under this section, the duration of the property tax credit, the criteria and qualifications necessary to receive the credit, and any other necessary provisions. As of July 2011 at least four counties -- Montgomery County, Howard County, Baltimore County, and Anne Arundel County -- had adopted a tax credit under this statute. Carroll County has also adopted a green building property tax credit under a separate, county specific provision (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-308(e)) of Maryland law. Please visit the links above for tax credit information on the incentives available in each county.
|Maryland Enterprise Zone Tax Credits (Maryland)||Maryland||Enterprise Zone||Yes||State/Province||Businesses locating in a Maryland Enterprise Zone may be eligible for income tax and real property tax credits in return for job creation and investments. Businesses located in one of two focus areas are also be eligible for personal property tax credits. There are two forms of Enterprise Zone Tax Credits: (1) Ten-year credit against local real property taxes on a portion of real property improvements. The credit is 80% the first five years, and decreases 10% annually to 30 percent in the tenth and final year. (2) One-time income tax credits of $1,000 per new worker. For economically disadvantaged employees, the credit is $6,000 per employee over three years.|
|Maryland Radiation Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Safety and Operational Guidelines||Yes||State/Province||The policy of the state is to provide for the constructive use of radiation and control radiation emissions. This legislation authorizes the Department of the Environment to develop comprehensive programs and policies to manage radiation risks, review radiation source plans and applications, and conduct inspections to determine radiation hazards. Local regulations enacted by a county, municipality, or a board of health are permitted as long as they are consistent with state law and regulations. A Radiation Control Advisory Board is established within the Department to aid the Department's efforts under this legislation. This legislation contains additional information on the regulation of radiation sources, low-level radioactive waste disposal, and enforcement.|
|Maryland Soil Conservation Districts Law (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||It is the policy of the state to conserve the soil, water, and related resources of the state through establishing regulations for land-use practices related to soil erosion. This legislation establishes the State Soil Conservation Committee and local Soil Conservation Districts. Districts are authorized to enact local rules and regulations pertaining to land use practices and soil conservation, while the Committee is responsible for facilitating cooperation and the interchange of information between districts, and aiding district programs.|
|Maryland Wildlands Preservation System (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||Maryland has a State Wildlands Preservation System, administered by the Department of Natural Resources, that is meant to protect these areas and provide for their future use and enjoyment. The construction or placement of permanent roads, structures, and installations is severely restricted in designated wildlands areas.|
|Mines and Mining (Maryland)||Maryland||Safety and Operational Guidelines
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||State/Province||It is the policy of the state to encourage the development of mined resources in Maryland while protecting the environment and public health and safety. This legislation establishes the Bureau of Mines within the Department of the Environment and provides for the establishment of rules and regulations governing mining activity. The legislation addresses the permitting process for mining activities; the examination, licensing, inspection, and supervision of mining activity (sec. 15-301 et seq.); mine safety (sec. 15-401 et seq.); strip mining (sec. 15-501 et seq.); deep mine control (sec. 15-601 et seq.); and surface mining (sec. 15-801 et seq.).|
|Montgomery County - Green Power Purchasing (Maryland)||Maryland||Green Power Purchasing||Yes||Local||In October 2000, a group six county agencies, consisting of Montgomery County, Montgomery County Public Schools, Montgomery County Housing Opportunities Commission, Montgomery College, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, and the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, began purchasing power on a competitive basis. In March 2003, the county's energy policy was amended to incorporate the purchase of renewable energy and to expand energy-efficiency efforts. This resolution required all county agencies to purchase 5% of their total electricity supply from power generated by zero-emission renewable resources.
In May 2005, Montgomery County signed a contract with Washington Gas Energy Services and its wind energy supplier, Community Energy, to supply 5% of a multi-jurisdictional group's power with wind-energy resources, resulting in a purchase of 38.4 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year for two years from wind facilities in West Virginia. The contract applied to six county agencies, 11 municipalities and Prince George's County. In early 2006, the county and its partners doubled their commitment to 10% renewable energy (Resolution 15-1529) for FY 2007 with a further goal of 20% by FY 2011. The County further updated the green purchasing policy in October 2008, enacting a resolution setting an FY 2009 goal of 15% renewable energy while maintaining the FY 2011 goal of 20%. The 2008 resolution also updated the County's renewable energy qualification criteria to include only wind, solar, anaerobic digestion, landfill gas, biomass, geothermal, and tidal energy as defined under the Tier I resource definitions of the state RPS.
In April 2010, the County and its partners announced a new green power purchase of almost 162 million kWh, boosting the County's purchase to 30% of its annual electricity use. However, as of June 2012 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power partnership lists a current purchase of 134.6 million kWh, or 25% of electricity demand for the collective group. The County's FY2013 budget documents assume a continuation of these purchases, with most county agencies achieving a minimum purchase of 20% renewable energy through the extension of current contracts. The Montgomery County Clean Energy Buyers Group currently consists of Montgomery County Government, Montgomery County Public Schools, Montgomery College and The Maryland-National Park and Planning Commission. Also participating are the City of College Park, Chevy Chase Village, Chevy Chase Village Section 5, City of Gaithersburg, City of Rockville, City of Takoma Park, Town of Glen Echo, Town of Kensington, Town of Laytonsville and Town of Somerset.The group's initial commitment to purchase wind power was influenced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's designation of metropolitan Washington, DC, as a severe ozone non-attainment area. As a result of this designation, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC, approved State Implementation Plans (SIPs) in February 2004 in order to meet the national Ambient Air Quality Standard for ground-level ozone. These SIPs include the first state submissions of wind-energy purchases as control measures in regional air-quality plans required under the Clean Air Act. The wind purchase was designed to reduce dangerous ozone transport caused by fossil-fuel power plants in upwind areas.
|Montgomery County - High Performance Building Property Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||The state of Maryland permits local governments (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-242) to offer property tax credits for high performance buildings if they choose to do so. Montgomery County has exercised this option by offering property tax credits on new or extensively modified multi-family residential and commercial buildings that meet certain high performance building standards. An "extensive modification" is defined as a structural modification that alters 50% or more of the building's square footage.
The tax credit generally uses the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system as a metric for determining how "green"' a building is, although buildings that achieve comparable ratings under other green building standards are also eligible for the tax credit. Tax credits are available for buildings that achieve minimum ratings under the LEED New Construction (NC); Core and Shell (CS); and Existing Building (EB).
|Montgomery County - Home Energy Loan Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Loan Program||No||Local||This program is currently on hold. It provides loans to homeowners, re-paid through the property-tax bill, for energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements.|
|Montgomery County - Renewable Rights - No Private restrictions on Renewables (Maryland)||Maryland||Industry Recruitment/Support||Yes||Local||Provides that “a person must not create or enforce any deed restriction, covenant, rule, or regulation, or take any other action, which would prohibit the owner of any building from installing a renewable energy device.”|
|Montgomery County - Residential Energy Conservation Property Tax Credits (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||Note: As originally enacted, this program offer property tax credits for the installation of solar and geothermal energy devices in addition to energy conservation devices. In November 2011 the county enacted legislation (County Bill 28-11) terminating the program for solar and geothermal energy devices unless the taxpayer has entered a contract for costs or submitted an application on or before November 8, 2011. The change in law does not affect the sections of the law that allow property tax credits for various other energy conservation devices.
Montgomery County offers property tax credits on residential, owner-occupied structures for the installation of energy conservation devices. Energy conservation devices include a variety of common energy efficiency related improvements but do not include standard household appliances such as washing machines or clothes dryers. All systems must meet performance and safety standards set by a nationally recognized testing laboratory. The tax credit is effective for all property tax years beginning after June 30, 2008.
The tax credit for energy conservation devices is limited to the cost of the measure up to $250 per fiscal year. Eligible costs include parts, components and accessories necessary to operate the device as well as reasonable installation costs. Only costs incurred during the 12 months preceding a credit application are eligible for a tax credit. The amount of the tax credit may not exceed the taxes imposed on the property during a fiscal year. Excess credits accrued during a year may be carried forward for up to two additional years. The total value of credits for energy conservation deviecs that are granted by the county during a fiscal year may not exceed $100,000. In the event that applications during a fiscal year exceed this limit, a credit may be granted the following year or years in the order applications are received.Persons wishing to claim the credit must first obtain a certification for their system from the Montgomery County Department of Permitting Services. Applications for the tax credit are handled by the Montgomery County Department of Finance. Please see the program website for additional information on eligible measures and applications.
|Montgomery County Clean Energy Rewards Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Grant Program||No||Local||This program closed in June 2010. Montgomery County has established a Clean Energy Rewards Program under which the County will provide financial incentives to encourage consumers throughout Montgomery County to choose electricity produced by eligible renewable energy sources. The financial incentives will be in the form of incentive payments made available to consumers through their clean energy suppliers, or delivered directly to on-site generators. The rate for these incentives is $0.005/kWh with a cap, per participant, of 20,000kWh for residential and 400,000kWh for non-residential participants.|
|Net Metering (Maryland)||Maryland||Net Metering||Yes||State/Territory||Note: The program web site listed above links to the Maryland Public Service Commission's Net Metering Working Group page, which contains a variety of information resources related to the ongoing implementation of net metering in Maryland, such as meeting agendas, minutes, and draft utility tariffs.
Maryland’s net-metering law has been expanded several times since it was originally enacted in 1997. In their current form, the rules apply to all utilities -- investor-owned utilities (IOUs), electric cooperatives and municipal utilities. Residents, businesses, schools or government entities with systems that generate electricity using solar, wind, biomass, fuel cell, closed-conduit hydroelectric, and micro-CHP resources are eligible for net metering. The law permits outright ownership by the customer-generators as well as third-party ownership structures (e.g., leases and power purchase agreements). The provisions allowing for micro-CHP systems(H.B. 1057) and certain third-party ownership structures(S.B. 981) were added in May 2009 and took effect July 1, 2009. Net metering was extended to fuel cell electricity generation systems in May 2010(H.B. 821) and closed-conduit hydroelectric facilities in April 2011 (S.B. 271).Other important details of Maryland's net metering policy include:
|One Maryland Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Corporate Tax Incentive||Yes||Local||The One Maryland Tax Credit applies to businesses that invest in an economic development project in a “qualified distressed county.” Project tax credits may be up to $5 million and start-up tax credits may be up to $500,000. The business must create at least 25 full-time positions within 24 months.|
|PJM Interconnection (Multiple States)||Delaware
District of Columbia
|Interconnection||Yes||Non-Profit||PJM (originally Pennsylvania, Jersey, Maryland) Interconnection is a Regional Transmission Organization (RTO) that coordinates the movement of wholesale electricity in all or parts of Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. The PJM region has an area of 214,000 square miles, a population of about 60 million and a peak demand of 163,848 megawatts.|
|Permits and Variances for Solar Panels, Calculation of Impervious Cover (Maryland)||Maryland||Solar/Wind Permitting Standards||Yes||State/Territory||In May 2012 Maryland enacted legislation stating that any calculation of "impervious surface" required by state or local authorities as part of a permit or variance relating to zoning, construction, or stormwater may only include the foundation or base supporting the solar panel. The law generally applies statewide, including charter counties and Baltimore City. It does not however apply in a defined "critical area", including the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area and the Coastal Bays Critical Area. The term "solar panel" is not specifically defined, but presumably would include both solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar thermal panels.|
|Pipeline Safety (Maryland)||Maryland||Safety and Operational Guidelines||Yes||State/Province||The Public Service Commission has the authority enact regulations pertaining to pipeline safety. These regulations address pipeline monitoring, inspections, enforcement, and penalties.|
|Power Plant Research and Siting Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||The Power Plant Research and Siting Act of 1971 established the Power Plant Research Program (PPRP) to evaluate electric generation issues in the state and recommend responsible, long-term solutions. The program manages a consolidated review of all issues related to power generation in Maryland: it reviews applications, evaluates impacts, and recommends conditions for proposed power plants, transmission lines, and modifications; assesses the impacts of electric power production on the State's environmental resources; and evaluates long-range plans to meet electricity demand. Electric power generators must obtain a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) from the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) to build or modify power plants and transmission lines in the State, and PPRP assists with multiple steps of the review process.|
|Prince George's County - Solar Zoning (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Prince George's County has created special provisions for solar panels in their zoning codes.|
|Prince George's County - Solar and Geothermal Equipment Property Tax Credit (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||No||Local||Md. Property Tax Article § 9-203 allows local governments to offer property tax credits for energy conservation devices if they choose to do so. This credit applies to geothermal and solar PV and thermal systems on residential structures only. The credit is equal to 50% of the cost of the system, up to $5,000 for heating and cooling systems and $1,500 for water heating systems. The amount of the tax credit cannot exceed the taxes imposed on the property during a fiscal year. Maximum credits issued by the country during a fiscal year cannot exceed $250,000.|
|Prince George's County Underground Storage Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||Local||A gas storage company may invoke eminent domain to acquire property in Prince George's County for underground gas storage purposes. The area acquired must lie not less than 800 feet below the surface of a maximum of 12,000 acres of land, and may be owned by a public body. A permit from the Department of the Environment, along with an order from the Public Service Commission, is required prior to the use of eminent domain. The Act contains further information on eminent domain, landowner, and property rights, and fees. The Act is contained in section 14-201 et seq. Of the Environment Article, Annotated Code of Maryland; additional provisions concerning environmental regulations relevant to gas storage in Prince George's County can be found in section 14-301 et seq.|
|Private Activity Revenue Bonds (Maryland)||Maryland||Bond Program||Yes||State/Province||Private Activity Revenue Bonds are available in the form of both taxable bonds and tax-exempt bonds. Both types of bonds provide access to long-term capital markets for fixed asset financing. Eligibility for the tax-exempt bonds is limited by Federal tax law to 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations and manufacturing facilities. Additional limitations apply to the specific transaction type.|
|Property Tax Exemption for Solar and Wind Energy Systems (Maryland)||Maryland||Property Tax Incentive||Yes||State/Territory||In May 2007, Maryland established a property tax exemption for residential solar energy systems. Under this law solar energy devices “installed to heat or cool a dwelling, generate electricity to be used in the dwelling, or provide hot water for use in the dwelling” were exempt from state -- but not local -- property taxes. However, in April 2008 H.B. 377 was enacted, repealing this exemption beginning July 1, 2008. In place of the rescinded exemption, H.B. 377 inserted another provision exempting solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar hot water systems from real property taxes. The exemption now applies equally to state and local real property taxes. In addition, by removing the term "dwelling" and replacing it with "structure", the revised exemption appears to no longer be limited to residential systems.
In May 2009 the exemption was amended yet again by H.B. 1171 to add "residential wind energy equipment" as an eligible technology. In order to qualify, equipment must be sited on residential property and produce electricity to be used in a structure on that property. The new law also revised the definition of eligible solar property to include devices that use "solar thermal electric energy" to generate electricity for use in a structure. A separate piece of legislation, S.B. 621, subsequently amended the definition of solar energy property to include property that generates electricity which is put on the electrical grid (e.g., as in a net metering arrangement). These new provisions took effect July 1, 2009.
|Qualifying RPS State Export Markets (Maryland)||Maryland||Renewables Portfolio Standards and Goals||Yes||State/Province||This entry lists the states with Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) policies that accept generation located in Maryland as eligible sources towards their RPS targets or goals. For specific information with regard to eligible technologies or other restrictions which may vary by state, see the RPS policy entries for the individual states, shown below in the Authority listings. Typically energy must be delivered to an in-state utility or Load Serving Entity, and often only a portion of compliance targets may be met by out-of-state generation. In addition to geographic and energy delivery requirements, ownership, registry, and other requirements may apply, such as resource eligibility, generator vintage and capacity limitations, as well as limits on Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) vintage. The listing applies to RPS Main Tiers only, and excludes solar or distributed generation that may require interconnection only within the RPS state. This assessment is based on energy delivery requirements and reasonable transmission availability. Acceptance of unbundled RECs varies. There may be additional sales opportunities in RPS states outside the Eastern Interconnection. REC prices in markets with voluntary goals (North Dakota, South Dakota, Virginia) may be lower.|
|Queen Anne's County - Clean Energy Loan Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Loan Program||Yes||Local||A loan program established by Queen Anne's County in order to fund cost effective energy efficiency improvements or install a renewable energy device in eligible homes.|
|Queen Anne's County - Solar Zoning (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Queen Anne's County zoning code allows for ground mounted solar arrays in areas zoned as "open space," "agricultural," and "countryside" districts.|
|Regulation of Gas, Electric, and Water Companies (Maryland)||Maryland||Safety and Operational Guidelines
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||State/Province||The Public Service Commission is responsible for regulating gas, electric, and water companies in the state. This legislation contains provisions for such companies, addressing planning and siting considerations for electric generation facilities and transmission lines, consumer relations and rate-making, and natural gas supplier licensing. Section 7-501 et seq. Contains provisions for electric industry restructuring, which are aimed to create a competitive electricity supply and electricity supply services market within the state. Regulations for the placement of transmission lines by electricity generators can be found in COMAR 20.79.|
|Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (Maryland)||Maryland||Renewables Portfolio Standard||Yes||State/Territory||Note: In April 2013 Maryland enacted legislation (H.B. 226) creating a resource carve-out for offshore wind facilities. The carve-out is stated as a maximum percentage of 2.5% of retail electricity sales in 2017 and beyond, with the actual requirements to be determined by the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) subject to the 2.5% limitation. The definition of a qualifying offshore wind facility is limited to facilities located on the outer continental shelf between 10 and 30 miles off the cost of Maryland in a U.S. Department of Interior designated leasing zone. Facilities must connect to PJM Interconnection at a point on the Delmarva peninsula and are subject to PSC approval.
The PSC is not permitted to approve a project unless the project demonstrates positive net environmental, economic, and health benefits; the net rate impact for residential customers does not exceed $1.50 per month (based on consumption of 12,000 kWh annually); the rate impact for non-residential customers does not exceed 1.5% total annual electric bills over the duration of the project; and proposed offshore wind renewable energy credit (OREC) price schedule does not exceed $190 per megawatt-hour (MWh). The portion of the standard designated for offshore wind does not apply to retail sales in excess of 75 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) to industrial process customers in a given year, or monthly retail sales of more than 3,000 kWh to certain agricultural customers. For further information please see the full text of H.B. 226.
Maryland's Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard, enacted in May 2004 and revised in numerous times since, requires electricity suppliers (all utilities and competitive retail suppliers) to use renewable energy sources to generate a minimum portion of their retail sales. Beginning in 2006, electricity suppliers were required to provide 1% of retail electricity sales in the state from Tier 1* renewables and 2.5% from Tier 2** renewables. The renewables requirement increases gradually, ultimately reaching a level of 20% from Tier 1 resources in 2022 and beyond, and 2.5% from Tier 2 resources from 2006 through 2018. The Tier 2 requirement eventually sunsets, dropping to 0% in 2019 and beyond. A solar carve-out was established in 2007, and currently requires that a total of 2% of retail electricity sales come from solar resources by 2020. In 2013 the state established an offshore wind carve-out of up to 2.5% beginning in 2017, with the actual annual requirements to be established by the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) subject to the 2.5% limitation. Both the solar carve-out and the offshore wind carve-out are part of the overall Tier 1 requirement, thus they have the effect of reducing the requirements for other Tier 1 resources.
Compliance requirements for each year are as follows:
Initially, the RPS included credit multipliers for wind, solar, and methane. The multiplier for solar was replaced by the 2% solar requirement in 2007. Multipliers for wind and methane remained for facilities placed in service on or after January 1, 2004, although both have subsequently expired:
Energy from Tier 1 resources is eligible for RPS compliance regardless of when the system or facility was placed in service, except solar water heating systems, which must be commissioned on or after June 1, 2011 in order to qualify. Electricity suppliers were only permitted to begin to receive or accumulate RECs starting January 1, 2004. Energy associated with Tier 1 resources may be applied to either Tier 1 or Tier 2 obligations. Special conditions also apply for Tier 1 hydroelectric and Tier 2 resources regarding dates of eligibility.
Solar resources must be connected with the distribution grid serving Maryland, except that on or before December 31, 2011, solar resources not connected to the Maryland grid are eligible only if offers for solar RECs from Maryland grid sources are not made to an electricity supplier that would satisfy the RPS.
Provisions specific to the solar set-aside include the following:
Maryland’s Public Service Commission was charged with developing a method for estimating annual production, determining the REC payment amount, and designating an individual to develop the solar program requirements and outreach activities. The program website contains information on the PSC's activities in this area.
Each electricity supplier must submit a report to the Public Service Commission annually that demonstrates compliance with the RPS. An electricity supplier that fails to meet the standard must pay into the Maryland Strategic Energy Investment Fund (SEIF). The alternative compliance fee schedule, as amended by S.B. 277 in May 2010, is as follows:
Compliance fees paid into the SEIF, which is administered by the Maryland Energy Administration, will be used to fund grant and loan programs for Tier 1 renewable energy resources. Compliance fees for the solar obligation may only be used to support new solar resources in the state. The SEIF replaces the Maryland Renewable Energy Fund, which was repealed by H.B. 368 in 2008. The PSC is required to submit annual reports (see 2011 RPS Report) to the state legislature detailing utility compliance with the standard.
Electricity suppliers may recover costs incurred to comply with the standard in the form of a generation surcharge on all customers. However, the RPS law provides compliance cost caps and provisions for delaying compliance with the solar set-aside and non-solar Tier 1 requirements. If the actual or projected dollar-for-dollar cost for purchasing solar RECs in any one year is greater than or equal to 1% of the electric supplier’s total annual electricity sales revenues in Maryland, the electricity supplier may request that the PSC to delay by 1 year each of the scheduled percentages for solar and allow the solar percentage required for that year to continue to apply to the electricity supplier for the following year. The delay will continue each year until the actual or anticipated cost is less than 1% of the supplier’s annual sales revenue in Maryland, at which time the supplier will be subject to the next scheduled percentage increase. The procedure and rules are identical for non-solar Tier 1 requirements except the trigger level is the greater of 10% of an electricity supplier's total annual retail sales or the applicable Tier 1 percentage requirement for that year. The Tier 1 off-ramp was added in 2008 when the compliance requirements were increased.
Maryland's RPS was originally enacted in 2004, but has been revised on numerous occasions since that time. The 2004 enactment established a standard of 7.5% Tier 1 renewables by 2019 and 2.5% Tier 2 renewables by 2018 (sunsetting in 2019). Legislation enacted in April 2007 (S.B. 595) added a provision requiring electricity suppliers to derive 2% of electricity sales from solar energy in addition to the 7.5% renewables derived from other Tier 1 resources as outlined in the initial RPS law. The solar set-aside began at 0.005% of retail sales in 2008 and increases incrementally each year to reach 2% by 2020. The set-aside is projected to result in the development of more than 1,250 MW of solar capacity by 2020. In April 2008 H.B. 375 more than doubled the overall Tier 1 requirement and accelerated the compliance schedule. The Tier 2 and solar requirements were left unchanged at this time, but in May 2010 S.B. 277 accelerated the solar compliance schedule and increased solar alternative compliance payment levels for 2011 through 2016. Finally, Maryland enacted S.B. 717 allowing solar water heating systems commissioned on or after June 1, 2011 to qualify as eligible resources for the solar carve-out, effective January 1, 2012. In order to qualify for the standard solar water heating systems must: be commissioned on or after June 1, 2011; not be used soley to heat a pool or a hot tub; and use SRCC OG-100 certified equipment.
Also in May 2011, Maryland enacted S.B. 690 reclassifying waste-to-energy facilities connected to the Maryland distribution grid as Tier 1 resources. Formerly, all waste-to-energy facilities were considered Tier 2 facilities. The legislation also classifies facilities connected to the Maryland distribution grid that use refuse-derived fuel (formerly not specifically addressed) as Tier 1 resources, effective October 1, 2011.In May 2012 Maryland enacted a suite of bills affecting the RPS. The most significant bill, S.B. 791/H.B. 1187, accelerates the solar carve-out compliance requirements by varying degrees beginning in 2013; pushes up the date for the ultimate 2% target from 2022 to 2020; and allows solar water heating energy production measurements for some systems to be estimated under a certification system other than SRCC OG-300 (subject to Public Service Commission approval). The changes also have the effect of reducing the minimum Tier I resource requirements from 2013 - 2021.
Apart from solar-related changes, in 2012 Maryland also enacted S.B. 652/H.B. 1186 allowing geothermal heating and cooling systems commissioned on or after January 1, 2013 that meet certain standards to qualify as a Tier I resource. Finally, in May 2012 the legislature also enacted S.B. 1004/H.B. 1339 allowing thermal energy associated with biomass systems that primarily use animal waste (possibly supplemented by other biomass resources) to qualify as Tier I resources, effective January 1, 2013.
* Tier 1 resources include solar, wind, qualifying biomass (excluding sawdust), methane from the anaerobic decomposition of organic materials in a landfill or a waste water treatment plant, geothermal, ocean (including energy from waves, tides, currents and thermal differences), fuel cells powered by methane or biomass, and small hydroelectric plants (systems less than 30 megawatts in capacity and in operation as of January 1, 2004). As a result of S.B. 348 of 2008, poultry-litter incineration facilities connected to the Maryland distribution grid now qualify as a Tier 1 resource. Further, as a result of S.B. 690 enacted in May 2011 and effective October 1, 2011, waste-to-energy facilities and facilities that use refuse-derived fuel which are connected to the Maryland distribution grid also now qualify as Tier 1 resources. Prior to this, waste-to-energy facilities were only eligible as Tier 2 resources and facilities that use refuse-derived fuel were not specifically addressed. As a result of 2012 legislation, certain geothermal heating and cooling systems and biomass systems that generate thermal energy also qualify as Tier 1 resources.** Tier 2 sources include hydroelectric power other than pump-storage generation, and waste-to-energy facilities through October 1, 2011 (see note above for further details).
|Residential Clean Energy Grant Program (Maryland)||Maryland||State Rebate Program||Yes||State/Territory||Note: Starting from October 14, 2014, installation that are replacing existing geothermal unit will not be eligible for $3,000 grant. Replacement for geothermal pumps will only qualify for $500 grant.
|Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Residential Solar and Wind Electricity Sales (Maryland)||Maryland||Sales Tax Incentive||Yes||State/Territory||In May 2011 Maryland enacted legislation providing a sales and use tax exemption for sales of electricity from qualifying solar energy and residential wind energy equipment to residential customers. In order to qualify for the exemption, the sale of electricity must be for residential use on a property owned by a net metering eligible customer-generator. Maryland already exempted energy sales under residential or domestic rate schedules on file with the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) from the sales and use tax. The law therefore places sales/purchases of electricity under residential solar or wind retail power purchase agreements (PPAs) on a level playing field with customer purchases of electricity from the grid. The exemption took effect July 1, 2011.|
|Sewage Sludge (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||State/Province||Sewage sludge utilization permits are required prior to the use, processing, and disposal of sewage sludge in Maryland. Sewage sludge (also known as biosolids) is not sewage, but rather is one of the final products of treated sewage at a sewage (wastewater) treatment plant. Sewage sludge is the fine particulate matter remaining after treatment which breaks down organic matter and destroys disease organisms in sewage. A SSU Permit is required for any person who collects, incinerates, stores, treats, applies to land, transports or disposes of sewage sludge or septage in Maryland.|
|Shore Erosion Control (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Department of Natural Resources is responsible for creating and implementing a program designed to minimize shore erosion through education, erosion control projects, promulgate regulations, and oversee the design and erection of shoreline structures.|
|Soil Erosion and Sediment Control (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Departments of the Environment and Natural Resources are authorized to develop regulations to combat soil erosion and control the addition of sediment to waters of the state. As part of the Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Program, an approved plan is required for any earth disturbance of 5,000 square feet or more and 100 cubic yards or more, and oversight is granted to the Departments and to local soil conservation districts. Some exemptions apply.|
|Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) (Maryland)||Maryland||Performance-Based Incentive||Yes||State/Territory||Under Maryland law, an SREC represents the generation attributes of 1 megawatt-hour (MWh) of electricity generation (or equivalent) from a qualifying solar facility. Electricity suppliers must purchase and retire solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) in order to meet their compliance obligations under the law, or pay a Solar Alternative Compliance Payment (SACP) for any shortfalls in SREC purchases. The SACP operates as a theoretical ceiling on the price that a supplier would pay for SRECs to fulfill obligations under the Maryland RPS.* In Maryland the SACP is set at $400 per MWh for 2009 - 2014, but will decline in future years, ultimately reaching $50 per MWh in 2023 and thereafter. Under this system, SRECs represent a significant source of revenue for owners of qualifying solar facilities, with a value determined by demand in the trading market.
All net-metered customers and renewable on-site generators in Maryland own all RECs or SRECs produced by their systems unless or until a customer or generator chooses to sell or otherwise transfer the RECs or SRECs to another party. A Maryland SREC has a three-year lifetime during which it is valid for compliance (i.e., the calendar year during which it was generated plus the next two calendar years). Once a facility qualifies as an eligible solar generator, it is eligible to produce SRECs for as long as it remains in service as an eligible generator. Residential solar water heating systems are not permitted to generate more than 5 SRECs annually.
**Beginning in 2012, this criterion should in most cases limit qualification to solar facilities physically located in Maryland. In addition, it could also impose size limitations on facilities by requiring that facilities be connected to the grid at the distribution-level voltages, as opposed to transmission-level voltages.
|Somerset County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance creates regulations for the permitting of Small Wind Energy Systems as a permitted accessory use in R-1, R-2, R-3, MRC and AR zoning districts, subject to certain requirements.|
|Southern States Energy Compact (Multiple States)||Alabama
United States Virgin Islands
|Yes||State/Province||The Southern States Energy Compact provides for the proper employment and conservation of energy, and for the employment of energy-related facilities, materials, and products, within the context of a responsible regard for the environment, among the Southeastern states, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Southern States Energy Board is responsible for administering the Compact and may adopt bylaws, rules, and regulations in conjunction with state agencies. The Board also encourages the development, conservation, and responsible use of energy and energy-related facilities, installations, and products as part of a balanced economy and a healthy environment.|
|St. Mary's County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||The purpose of these regulations is to allow a Small Wind Energy System used
to generate electricity at a rated capacity (as defined by the manufacturer) of 100kilowatts or less to be constructed and installed for on-site consumption only.
|State-Ocean City Beach Erosion Control District (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||A Beach Erosion Control District constitutes part of the Ocean City shoreline. Land clearing, construction activity, or the construction or placement of permanent structures within the district is prohibited.|
|Stormwater Management (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||Maryland's Stormwater Management Program, administered by the Department of the Environment, aims to reduce stormwater runoff. The program requires the submission of a stormwater management plan prior to land development.|
|Surety Bond Program (Maryland)||Maryland||Bond Program||Yes||State/Province||The Surety Bond Program, a program of the Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority, assists eligible small businesses in obtaining bid, performance or payment bonds necessary to perform on contracts where the majority of funds are also provided by a government agency or public utility. Bonds that are directly issued are limited to $5,000,000. Guaranties are limited to 90% of the face value of the bond not to exceed a maximum participation of $5,000,000.|
|Susquehanna River Basin Compact (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||This legislation enables the state's entrance into the Susquehanna River Basin Compact, which provides for the conservation, development, and administration of the water resources of the Susquehanna River Basin. The Susquehanna River Basin Commission is responsible for coordinating water resource and planning efforts within the basin. The states of New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland are party to this compact. The Compact established the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) as the agency to coordinate the water resources efforts of the three states and the federal government. The commissioners, or their alternates, meet periodically to act on applications for projects using water, adopt regulations, and direct planning and management activities affecting the basin's water resources.|
|Talbot County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance amends the Talbot County Code, Chapter 190, Zoning, Subdivision and Land Development, to permit small wind turbine systems with wind turbine towers not to exceed 160 feet in total height and amends standards for small wind turbine production facilities.|
|Washington County - Solar Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Provides for zoning restrictions on solar energy systems, including (1) six foot setbacks; (2) 20 foot height limitations on freestanding systems; (3) limitations on square feet of freestanding systems to no greater than ½ the footprint of the principle structure or six hundred feet (whichever is greater); (4) providing rooftop systems cannot exceed 12 feet above the roof line.|
|Washington County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||This ordinance establishes regulations to facilitate the installation and construction of Small Wind Energy Systems in Washington County for private landowners, subject to reasonable restrictions which will preserve the public health and safety.|
|Water Pollution Control and Abatement (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Department of the Environment is responsible for protecting the water quality of the state and enacting regulations to prevent and mitigate water pollution. The Water Management Administration (WMA) issues permits to protect Maryland’s water resources by controlling industrial and municipal wastewater discharges. Surface water discharges are regulated through combined State and federal permits under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES). Groundwater discharges are regulated through State issued groundwater permits. Section 9-301 of the Environment Article in the Annotated Code of Maryland contains provisions for water use and monitoring programs and discharge permits.|
|Wetlands and Riparian Rights (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||The Department of the Environment regulates dredging, dumping, filling, and similar activities in wetland areas to protect the environmental and public values of the wetlands and to sustain their ability to control floods. Regulations will be enacted with the consent of the Maryland Agricultural Commission. This legislation contains provisions to protect the rights of riparian owners and landowners. Licensing requirements for the construction of non-water dependent structures on piers can be found in section 16-104; such structures may not be permitted in Prince George's County. This legislation addresses licensing and fees for dredging, filling, construction, and similar activities in state and private wetlands, as well as the determination of the boundaries of those wetlands.|
|Wicomico County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Establishes zoning regulations for the installation and construction of small wind energy systems in Wicomico County for private landowners, subject to reasonable restrictions.|
|Wild and Scenic Rivers Act (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||State/Province||It is state policy to protect the outstanding scenic, geologic, ecologic, historic, recreational, agricultural, fish, wildlife, cultural, and other similar values of certain rivers and adjacent lands. The Department of Natural Resources is responsible for designating rivers and river segments to be classified as wild and scenic, and development and construction are restricted on or near these rivers.|
|Wildlife Management Areas (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations
Siting and Permitting
|Yes||State/Province||Wildlife Management Areas exist in the State of Maryland as wildlife sanctuaries, and vehicles, tree removal, and construction are severely restricted in these areas. Some of these species are also classified as Natural Heritage Areas, which exist for the preservation of threatened or endangered animals or plants.|
|Windswept Grant Program - (Maryland)||Maryland||State Rebate Program||Yes||State/Territory||The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) provides rebates for the installation of residential and non-residential wind energy systems through the Windswept program, which is part of the Clean Energy Grant Program. Systems of up to 750 kilowatts (kW) are eligible for the program. The incentive level is set at $3,000 per kW of normalized generating capacity at a reference wind speed of 11 meters per second (m/s). Incentives are allocated on a per property basis, meaning that incentives will not be awarded for multiple turbines on the same property.
Incentives are capped at the lesser of $100,000 or 50% of the net installed cost after other federal, state, and local incentives. In order to qualify, wind energy systems must be listed on the program web site or on the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) List of Qualified Wind Generators. The program website contains sample grant calculations for common small wind turbines that have been installed in Maryland (note that this is not a complete list of eligible wind turbines).
Systems must also comply with all applicable performance and safety standards, including local codes, the National Electric Code, Maryland’s net metering rules and interconnection standards. Off-grid systems are not specifically addressed by the program rules, but might be permitted on a case-by-case basis. Project applications must contain a detailed site assessment, wind energy system specifications, signed cost estimates, a preliminary wind analysis, and pre-qualification forms detailing certain other aspects of the project. It is possible that some applications will be deemed ineligible based on site conditions (e.g., poor wind resource, obstructions, etc.).Grants are awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Systems installed prior to the submission of an application remain eligible for incentives provided the system was placed in service during the same fiscal year as the application was submitted. For further information and application forms, please consult the program web site listed at the top of this page.
|Wood Heating Fuel Exemption (Maryland)||Maryland||Sales Tax Incentive||Yes||State/Territory||This statute exempts from the state sales tax all wood or "refuse-derived" fuel used for heating purposes. The law does not make any distinctions about whether the qualified fuels are used for residential or commercial heating so both purposes should qualify. As of October 2012 the Maryland sales tax rate is 6%.|
|Worcester County - Wind Ordinance (Maryland)||Maryland||Siting and Permitting||Yes||Local||Establishes regulations for the installation of Small Wind Energy Systems.|
|Youghiogheny Wild and Scenic River (Maryland)||Maryland||Environmental Regulations||Yes||Local||Portions of the Youghiogheny River are protected under the Scenic and Wild Rivers Act, and development on or near these areas is restricted. COMAR section 08.15.02 addresses permitted uses and allowable and prohibited agricultural, mining, commercial, industrial, and recreational activities in these areas, as well as stream alteration and diversion.|