Clean Power

Published on March 21st, 2014 | by James Ayre


Switzerland Will Allow Personal Solar PV System Consumption Starting April 1st

March 21st, 2014 by  

The Swiss government will — as of April 1st — begin allowing residential PV system owners to consume the electricity that they generate with their solar panels.

As it stands currently, PV systems must, by law, feed 100% of the electricity that they generate directly into the Swiss electricity grid. This system will now soon be ending — as per a rule revision approved last week by the Swiss Federal Council.

Image Credit: Swiss Flag via Flickr CCImage Credit: Swiss Flag via Flickr CC

In addition to the self-consumption ruling, the Swiss government also approved a new means of encouraging solar PV system installation — homeowners will now be offered a choice between either a 30% rebate on the cost of installation or eligibility in the country’s feed-in tariff scheme.

Writing on the topic of the new ruling, PV Magazine provides more:

The new rule revision … will state that parties interested in installing small-scale PV systems will be able to consume the electricity it produces. Any surplus power will be shared among others living in the same local community, said the authorities.

Switzerland’s leading solar association, Swissolar, has welcomed the reforms, stating that they will help ease the bottleneck for PV projects that are currently waiting FIT acceptance.

Last summer, Swissolar was critical of the Swiss government’s decision to reduce the country’s FIT rate by between 35-40%, fearing that excessive tariff reductions would inflict “massive damage” on Switzerland’s solar sector.

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • johnBas5

    Since being efficient with energy is a necessity and when using electricity first sending it on the grid and then using it would be wasteful I say legislation like the Swiss was should not have existed ever.

    • Ronald Brakels

      Under the old system people had no incentive to match their energy consumption to output of their solar systems and so had a disadvantage there. But it was an accounting arrangement and electricity produced by rooftop solar was still used locally as with rooftop solar in other countries rather than being transmitted further than it need to be be and thus suffering losses.

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