– This is so bad. We’re just getting started, and then you start to reduce support for the industry that’s only in the beginning. “We think this is very unfortunate,” says Trine Berntsen. She is the Managing Director of the Industry Federation solar block.
It was on Wednesday that Enova They announced that starting October 1, they would cut support on a number of measures (external link). One of these is the support for solar energy systems.
For solar systems you currently get NOK 7500 plus NOK 2000 per kWh up to 20kWh.
From October 1, the subsidy per kWh was reduced to NOK 1,250.
And while full support today provides up to NOK 47,500, this will be reduced to NOK 32,500 this fall.
The solar industry knows nothing until Enova announces the change.
Do consumers fear they won’t get their money’s worth?
Enova based the cut on the understanding that the need was no longer great.
There has simply been an exponential increase in both the number of solar cells and the number of suppliers. The positive development of the market means it reduces the need for benefits, says Anna Barnwell, director of marketing at Enova, for NRK.
Enova has been supporting solar energy systems in Norwegian homes since 2015.
In February 2022, they increased support due to lack of interest in solar in the market.
Couldn’t the cut lead to fewer people choosing to invest in rooftop solar cells?
Everything indicates that this market is rolling over and doing well. In 2021, 1,500 people installed rooftop solar cells, in 2022 there were over 5,000 and so far this year alone nearly 5,000 people have applied for support. We continue to expect a lot of interest in this technology, Barnwell says.
But Berentsen of the Solar Energy Cluster thinks the cut is all wrong.
– This is completely opposite to what one is busy with these days, you say.
Berentsen points to the Energy Commission’s recommendation on solar energy development and the Storting decision in June, in which Parliament asked the government to set a target for new solar capacity of eight terawatt-hours (TWh).terawatt hour) before 2030, and develop a concrete action plan that makes it possible to achieve the goal within the revised budget in 2024.
For comparison, 0.3 TWh of solar energy is produced each year.
– For individuals, Enova support is very important. Solar panels are a very big investment for the consumer. Now there will be a rush to build solar cells and apply for subsidies, but when there’s a waiting period of three to four months, they may not be able to get that subsidy, Berntsen says.
Barnwell responded that she hopes and believes that most of those who have requested installation and are waiting for it will be able to meet the deadline. It is reported that there will still be support to obtain after October 1.
– the opposite of what we actually need
Lars Haltebriken (SV) is a member of the Parliament’s Energy and Environment Committee. He thinks the cut is dangerous.
– Now we stand on the steps of the solar cell revolution in Norway as more and more people use it. Then he says cutting support is the opposite of what we actually need.
Haltbrekken says he has challenged Climate and Environment Minister Espen Barth Eide over whether he will take the initiative to reverse the announced cut.
– If he does not, how does he think the reduction will contribute to achieving the target set at eight terawatt hours? He says.
If more people win, they will get support
NRK asked the Minister to comment on the Haltbrekken Challenge, via the Communications Department of the Ministry for Climate and Environment. They chose to let Foreign Minister Ragnhild Serstad answer.
– Haltbrekken overlooks that we should spend more money on the scheme. Prices are lowered, but the budget is increased so that more solar panels are supported and more people can share in the benefits. This will contribute positively to the new solar target, she wrote in an email to NRK.
When asked what the Minister for Climate and Environment thinks about Enova’s announcement of subsidy cuts in light of the parliamentary resolution on solar targets, and the report of the Energy Commission, Serstad replied that one must not forget about other tools that also help accelerate the solar adventure.
Among other things, better In addition to the customer scheme Which increases the attractiveness of the participation of residential associations and commercial buildings in electricity.
Politician Høgre Bård Ludvig Thorheim also reacts to Enova’s cut.
– I was surprised by the decision when the government said we should invest more in solar energy and the entire parliament approved ambitious targets for the amount of solar energy we would have in 2030, he says.
– We lag behind other countries and things are not going fast enough, he says.
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