Germany: PV storage subsidies expected in May

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The media has been covering the news relating to storage subsidies for photovoltaic plants for weeks now. An official announcement of the program, however, is yet to be made.

Word is that details of the program will be released next week. Already on Tuesday, Bayern-based Enerix stated in a press release that the government has already released details of the program. Upon further investigation, it came to light that the Bayern CSU parliament member Karl Holmeier provided the information on the program. It is planned that the new KfW program "Renewable energy – Storage" will commence in May.

The program will financially support decentralized energy storage in conjunction with photovoltaic plants via low-interest loans from state-owned KfW bank and principal grants from the Environment Ministry. The subsidies apply to newly installed plants with stationary battery storage systems, as well as storage systems that will be connected to photovoltaic systems later this year after the plants start operation, according to Holmeier. The systems have to have a maximum of 30 kW and be developed in Germany.

Applicants may be private individuals, domestic and foreign companies, municipal and church businesses, farmers and professions. A circular from KfW shows that the grants from the Environment Ministry only apply to investment into battery storage systems, but not for investments into photovoltaic systems. The credit can, however, be applied to the total investment.

The subsidies amount to 30% of the eligible costs of battery systems. The request for the grants is provided along with a loan application. This can be requested via the local bank to KfW as soon as the battery storage system is installed according to the circular.

The term of the soft loans can be 5, 10 or 20 years. Another prerequisite is that the photovoltaic plant feeds in up to 60% of its installed capacity into the grid. This rule applies to the entire duration of plant operation, albeit for at least 20 years, according to the KfW circular. The subsidies can also only be applied if the battery has guarantee of seven years.

The Environment Ministry has made no official remarks on the program. A spokesperson referred nevertheless to the commitment made by the Environment Minister, Peter Altmaier that subsidized loans from the KfW and grants of €50 million is to be set this year.

Translated by Shamsiah Ali-Oettinger.

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