David Feldman and Paul Schwabe of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have published their annual solar PV financing report: Terms, Trends, and Insights on PV Project Finance in the United States, 2018. I am pleased to have been invited to comment on a draft of the report and find the final version to be a valuable reference with respect to solar project finance in the United States.
One of the most interesting features of the report is a table that provides that tax equity investors’ total after-tax returns for large distributed PV portfolios are between 7.2 percent and 18.2 percent, while the total after-tax return for tax equity investors for utility-scale PV is between 7.2 percent and 9 percent. Here’s a table from the report with those and other financing cost data points:
For anyone in working in solar project finance, the full report is worth reading and provides important insights.