Update Post: December 4, 2023 11:05 pm
The outbreak of the war in Ukraine not only meant that Europe focused on the need to guarantee its own energy supply in the face of the apparent dependence on Russian gas, but the consequent rise in prices in the energy sector caused many families to seek alternatives to the high electricity bills that were reaching their homes.
In this context, the installation of energy generation systems for photovoltaic self-consumption increased at high speeds in 2022, driven in part by the promise of Next Generation funds from the European Union, which would subsidize the authorizations of renewable energy facilities for supply own in the residential and business environment.
Although the transition towards green energy continues to cause renewable sources to continue to rise, this growth has slowed, especially in the residential market, since the beginning of this year. The rise in interest rates has made financial products such as consumer loans that some individuals used to pay for the initial investment more expensive, and the moderation in the price of supply has made the change in the energy ‘mix’ less pressing. Added to this is the blocking of European funds, whose payment has been greatly delayed from the expected deadline and has not yet been paid to a large number of applicants.
The profitability of solar energy in Spain
Solar energy is one of the most requested options by Spanish homes, not only because of the attractiveness of a renewable and non-polluting supply source, but also because of the high profitability that can be obtained from this type of installations. In fact, it can help reduce between 70 and 90% of the final price of the electricity bill. In addition, the surplus energy produced could be sold to electricity companies at a discounted price, achieving additional income.
From the company Solfy, which is dedicated to photovoltaic installation for self-consumption, they estimate that the average deployment that a residence in the country contracts, of about eight solar panels and a power of four kilowatt hours (kW), will obtain returns to fully recover the investment in a period of between 2 and 6 years. This initial investment, whose average in Spain would be about 4,500 euros, can be reduced by benefiting from the bonuses and aid offered by the different public administrations, thus reducing the time necessary for the investment to offer positive returns.
The autonomies are left without funds.
However, the largest aid, corresponding to the European funds for the ecological transition, has not been fully executed, despite having opened its first call in July 2021. The exhaustion of funds and the problems in the processing and management of the autonomous communities, which would be responsible for making payments to consumers, have complicated the financing plans of households and companies that advocated for self-consumption attracted by the generous subsidies for their installation, and has slowed the growth of This type of energy solutions, indicates the sector company Solideo.
A small number of communities have paid a significant percentage of the aid, including Navarra. The majority of Spanish autonomous governments, on the contrary, continue without having paid the agreed amount to practically all of the individuals whose application was processed and approved despite the fact that many of these facilities have already been in operation for a significant time.
In other territories, on the other hand, actions have already begun to speed up the payment process. In Catalonia, for example, the Catalan Energy Institute (ICAEN) has hired new technicians to strengthen its teams and has signed that it will begin paying for the corresponding imports starting this November.
However, the company specialized in solar energy explains that some autonomous communities have the possibility of requesting the sending of more funds from European organizations, but have not yet made use of this option. These communities will be Asturias, the Canary Islands, Extremadura, Galicia and Murcia, in addition to the autonomous cities of Ceuta and Melilla.