Switzerland allocates $521 million for solar rebates in 2021


From pv magazine Germany

The Swiss Federal Council has earmarked CHF 470 million (US$521 million) for solar rebates in 2021. Of this, CHF 270 million will be available for small systems with an output of less than 100 kW and CHF 200 million for large systems exceeding 100 kW in size. The one-time remuneration covers around 20% of the investment costs, depending on the system performance.

In order to make the registration for the solar rebates more user-friendly, the Federal Office of Energy has asked the agency Pronovo AG to develop a digital customer portal, which is intended to simplify communication with the authorities.

The industry association Swissolar also wants to bring a digital tool onto the market this year with the support of the Swiss energy agency EnergieSchweiz. Called EasyAdmin, the tool is intended to make it easier for planners and installers to deal with the administrative work with Pronovo, the network operators and the municipalities.

A new map with geodata on the electricity production facilities in Switzerland is now available on the website of the Federal Office of Energy. With this data, interested parties may follow the expansion of solar PV systems for each Swiss municipality. This also makes it possible to analyze how much the municipalities are already using their existing photovoltaic potential.

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Less bureaucracy, simpler processes

In addition, Switzerland wants to remove some legal hurdles for photovoltaics. For example, as of July 1, 2021, the planning approval requirement for energy generation systems that are connected to a low-voltage distribution network is to be lifted. This means that PV systems can be deployed more easily, cheaply, and quickly. Obtaining a restricted installation permit is also set to be simplified on July 1.

The certification process required for the proof of origin for PV systems up to an output of less than 100 kilowatts is to be simplified by January 1, 2022.

According to the latest figures from the International Renewable Energy Agency, the Alpine country had an installed PV capacity of around 3.11 GW at the end of last year. In 2020, newly deployed PV systems reached a record figure of 529 MW. Last year, the Federal Council had also devoted CHF 470 million to the rebate program.

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