More Good News For Irish Solar Industry On Rooftops
The Irish Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten T.D. has launched a new scheme to support domestic customers who install solar photovoltaic (solar PV) panels on their homes.
This pilot scheme will support the installation of solar PV panels for the generation and self-consumption of renewable electricity. The scheme will be grant aided and there will be additional grants available to those who install battery storage to capture the electricity they generate for use at a later date.
Announcing the grants for homeowners, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten TD said:
"Turning your home into a renewable power station is now one step closer. Micro generation is an incredibly exciting space that will allow citizens in local communities to generate their own electricity and contribute towards Ireland's climate action targets. With this grant that I am announcing today, a typical 3 bed semi-detached house would spend about â‚¬1,800 on a solar panel system and would save approximately â‚¬220 per year on their electricity bills. The Government is committed to helping citizens reduce their energy use and making clean energy cheaper and affordable to use. The introduction of a grant for household solar PV and further increases to home energy grant amounts demonstrates this commitment."
The Minister added:
"The pilot scheme will be subject to a 6 month review at which time the costs of installation will be assessed and further opportunities to broaden this scheme to other groups and other technologies will be explored."
The scheme will be funded by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment and administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI).
Until recently Ireland's PV development was taking place on Irish rooftops "“ despite the government offering no feed-in tariff or any other kind of support. Of the 10 MW of PV capacity installed in the country to date, the vast majority is rooftop projects. The new grant will accelerate that growth and see more solar on more rooftops in Ireland.
The solar PV grant will help build a stronger supply chain in Ireland and raise both awareness and experience of micro generation with
homeowners. As we move towards a smarter grid, and a market that rewards increased participation of individuals and businesses,
programmes such as this will help us to define the best pathway to a lower carbon future. Alongside the solar PV grant, increases in grant
levels within our homes programmes will help to increase activity in homeowners reducing their energy demand, which remains the most cost effective way of enjoying the benefits of a more sustainable home.
Jim Gannon , SEAI Chief Executive
Of the 10 MW of PV capacity installed in the country to date, the vast majority is rooftop projects. The new grant will accelerate that growth and see more solar on more rooftops in Ireland.
SEAI say support is available to all owners of dwellings built and occupied before 2011. The grant is available for all new solar PV installations from Tuesday 31st July 2018.
welcomes Residential Rooftop Solar PV Scheme
Solar industry bolstered
by further government support
Irish Solar Energy Association (ISEA) welcomes the introduction of a grant scheme
for rooftop solar PV by the Department of Communications, Climate Action &
Environment (DCCAE). The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) will be
managing the scheme that will provide a contribution of up to â‚¬3,800 towards total
scheme outlines that any installation greater than 2kWp must install a battery
to store excess energy. For installations 2kWp or less in size, it is
recommended to install a hot water diverter and excess electricity will be used
to heat water. SEAI outlines that this strategy encourages self-consumption
is the norm when a grant scheme is introduced, the industry expands and
competition increases. ISEA CEO Michael McCarthy said "it is great to see this
grant scheme introduced and we commend SEAI on their speedy response to
Minister Naughten's call to action. It will encourage uptake and increase
public understanding of solar energy. We would however call for review of
planning restrictions for rooftop solar. Planning regulations were previously
based on the threshold used by SEAI in assessing grants for solar thermal under
the Greener Homes Scheme and have not been reviewed since 2008. The industry
has changed dramatically in 10 years and regulations need to be adapted in line
scheme is currently only open to residential buildings. Commenting on this, ISEA
said "this grant scheme is a step in the right direction and we fully support
the principle of self-consumption. We are hopeful that through further
collaboration with DCCAE and SEAI it could be extended to include small scale
commercial enterprises and community buildings. If this were to happen, ISEA
would call for a Feed in Tariff (FIT) to be introduced for surplus energy
exported to the grid. This would allow community buildings and small businesses
throughout the country to earn revenue from the generation of clean energy. In
the case of a school, revenue could be earned during the summer months when
circa 80% of electricity produced would be exported."
grant scheme follows the publication of the High Level Design Paper on the
Renewable Electricity Support Scheme by DCCAE last week. It is estimated that
the proposals of both schemes will contribute to the creation of up to 7,000 jobs
in the Irish solar industry through investment in both ground mount and rooftop