Savings in electricity falling from the roof

It was like a broadcast. The abolition of the solar tax in 2018 was decisive in the revival of an industry like photovoltaics, which until then was tied up by lack of profitability. It didn’t take long for the results to be noticed, a significant increase in both industrial and residential self-consumption projects, in any case, not yet comparable to the future. And the unstoppable rise of electricity prices, with funds from the European Union, In Spain by 2030 they will multiply both installations and power by fivemeets the demand of consumers who want to save money on their electricity bills. Job prospects are so significant that even large power companies have jumped into this bandwagon, which until very recently was almost the exclusive territory of small companies. But the balloon inflates so fast that at risk of explosion if skilled labor is not available and if problems persist in the supply of components.

The industry currently consists of approximately 2,000 companies employing 58,000 workers, including both direct and indirect jobs. According to a report by the Spanish Photovoltaic Association (UNEF), 1,203 megawatts (MW) of new electricity was installed in self-consumption facilities in the country in 2021. double the number of the previous year. Domestic installations accounted for 32% of the total from 19%, while industry and trade sectors shared 41% and 26% shares, respectively.

José Donoso, the managing director of this organization, explains this important departure, referring to the very positive new regulations and high electricity prices. “Individuals – he underlines – have realized that their money is better on their roofs than on the banks”.

So what is it that drives both individuals and companies to prefer solar panels when getting down to concrete? Indeed, the unstoppable rise in electricity prices, as well as an incentive to bet on self-consumption, A household plumbing that used to pay for itself in nine years now does it in almost half. The same applies to industrial and commercial complexes with initial periods of four and six years, respectively, now reduced to the same terms. The other factor, logically, is the savings in electricity consumption, ranging from 30 to 80%, and in some cases even more.

Rafael Barrera, managing director of the National Association of Renewable Energy Producers and Investors (Anpier), points to other issues that also impacted this departure. “Recently – he emphasizes – the barrier of distrust regarding the reliability and performance of solar panels has been broken. we have a very mature technologytherefore we find ourselves in a market in full swing ».

However, despite the rapid increase in self-consumption since 2018, there is still more to be done. And Spain currently has 3.2 gigawatts installed, with the 2030 target to reach 15. This is a very complex target, but everything shows that it can be achieved thanks to the 1,400 million euros they will reach. According to the calculations made by the sector, the ‘Next Generation’ funds of the European Union, which will increase the number of installations fivefold, will increase from the current 100,000 to half a million. It has also been calculated that the community money will in turn be converted into cash. 5,000 million Euro direct investment. From the very beginning, the turnover of the self-consumption sector for this year is expected to move close to 1,920 million euros, allowing for 2,400 megawatts of installation.

To achieve these goals, companies started a commercial war to get the maximum number of customers, offers and offers all kinds of possibilities. This is the case of Otovo, a Norwegian company that has been operating in Spain for some time and specializes in domestic self-consumption. Íñigo Amorbieta, managing director of the firm here, states that a standard set-up for a house costs around 5,000 euros, so it’s an investment there are some families who couldn’t afford it from the start. so they offering the opportunity to choose a rental of 40 or 50 euros per month For a period of 20 years, «which allows—to clarify—saves more than paid for. This is an interesting option, because nothing needs to be depreciated because no investment is made».

Another company that has made self-consumption its reason for existence is Holaluz, which currently has no less than 400,000 customers with a unique marketing approach. This is stated by its CEO, Carlota Pi, who points out that the foundation of his job is to install more solar panels than the recruiter needs. More energy can be provided to customers without a roof.. “Original customer – emphasizes – manages to save 100% of what he consumes and powers two more homes within a radius of 500 meters”. Pi also highlights its potential 10 million residential roofs technically available in Spain. “We could reach 50,000 megawatts of power when there were only 500 megawatts now,” he states.

Solar Cover, on the other hand, is a company specializing in industrial self-consumption. Director Luis Navarro, one of the issues promoting photovoltaic energy in companies, the advent of lithium batteriesBy storing excess energy, it can be consumed at night or when the electricity price is more expensive. “This is a real revolution,” he says. His company has specialized in this area and soon plans to install what is now Europe’s largest mega-battery at the Texathenea plant in Villena, which is six meters wide and weighs 30 tons.

Big electricity companies are also betting on self-consumption, due to being a sector in full expansion. Without going any further, Repsol and Telefónica announced the launch this week of Solar360, a joint company that aims to be a leader in this market with innovative services for individuals, neighborhood communities and companies. Iberdrola highlights that 40% of the 100,000 existing customers in the country are managed by them, while Naturgy accompanies all types of customers from industry to residential, owner communities or SMEs, thus saving between 40% and 70%.

But the growth projections are so enormous that there is fear of a bubble bursting that cannot be addressed in the same industry. There are workforce issues that need to be added in the context of the disruption of supply chains, which already exist due to the lack of adequate skilled personnel and which can lead to installation delays. Two factors that paint a panorama full of uncertainties.

And in the midst of all this, what do customers think? There aren’t many industry-related complaints, though the OCU has warned of issues regarding compensation for excess spilled into the grid or the quality of some solar panels in terms of performance and durability. with everything, Even the environmental organization Greenpeace encourages self-consumptionand not only to reduce CO² emissions and fight climate change, but also to avoid energy dependence on Russia and stop fueling Putin’s war.

Source: Informacion


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