Nonprofit Partnerships

As part of Nebraskans for Solar’s (NFS’s) mission to provide access to solar energy for all, our organization seeks statewide partnerships with nonprofit agencies that build and/or rehabilitate low- to moderate- income housing.

What we offer nonprofit agencies whose employees, clients, and volunteers complete all or most of their housing construction & renovation work themselves:

  • Scholarships for tuition fees and books for one or more employees to complete the solar photovoltaic installation course at a local community college, based upon available funding.
  • Consultation and mentoring for development of a solar program for your clients.
  • Presentations to your Board of Directors, in person or via conference calls, on the benefits of providing the option of installing solar to homeowners whose houses are suitable for a south- or west-facing photovoltaic (PV) system.
  • Collaborative grant writing/reviewing to fund photovoltaic systems.

What NFS requires:

  • A Memorandum of Understanding that identifies responsibilities for Nebraskans for Solar and partnering nonprofits.
  • A minimum of two photovoltaic (PV) systems installed by your employee(s) awarded a Nebraskans for Solar scholarship, upon completion of the PV Installers classroom work and field training.
  • Collaborative fundraising and/or grant writing, with the requirement, included in the Memorandum of Understanding, that Nebraskans for Solar and partnering organizations will equally share this responsibility.

Major benefits of this program are cost savings to the homeowners:

The typical cost of a solar system plus labor in Nebraska is $3.50 per installed watt. The average cost of a PV system only is approximately  $1.50 to $2.00 an installed watt, depending on the manufacturer. For example, a:

  • 3-kilowatt PV system: twelve 250-watt solar panels or 3000 watts x $3.50 = $10,500
  • 3-kilowatt PV system: 3000 watts x $1.50 / watt = $4,500 or $6,000 @ $2.00 / watt

The permit and interconnection are additional “soft costs.” Nonprofits that have their own licensed electrician, employee or volunteer, will save on interconnection costs. The permit is about $50.


Only homeowners and businesses qualify for the 30% federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC), not nonprofit agencies. Lower-income households may not have sufficient income to take advantage of this incentive; therefore, NFS is offering assistance to nonprofit agencies for funding not to exceed 50% of installation costs of a PV system for low- to moderate-income families.

All Lincoln Electric System customers who install solar photovoltaic systems also qualify for an additional incentive, called “capacity payments,” based on their solar system’s orientation and its energy-generating capacity:

  • South-facing, fixed-photovoltaic systems – $375 for each kilowatt of the system’s nameplate DC capacity. For a 3-kW system, for example, the customer receives a one-time payment of $1125, reducing the cost of the solar system to $3375, or $9375 for the system plus labor.
  • West-facing, or single or dual-axis tracking photovoltaic solar – $475 for each kilowatt of the system’s nameplate DC capacity. For a 3-kW system the customer receives a one-time capacity payment of $1,425, reducing the cost of the PV system to $3,075 or $9,075 for the system plus labor.

NFS offers nonprofits that sub-contract their housing construction and renovation: All of the items listed above, with the exception of scholarships. 

To learn more about this program, email: