Home owners with solar panels can put any excess electricity the produce into the grid. However, the price paid in much of Switzerland is too low to encourage home owners to install extra solar capacity, reports RTS. Some politicians would like to see this changed.
Prices paid for solar energy added to the grid in Switzerland range from less than 4 cents per kWh to as high as 21.75 cents in the canton of Nidwalden – this map shows the grid price paid by region.
What consumers pay for electricity varies too. For example Romande Energie in French-speaking Switzerland charges around 9 cents per kWh for the electricity and around the same again for the network it’s delivered on. Taxes are then added on top bringing the total cost to around 20 cents per kWh depending on the plan. This makes generating your own power economically worthwhile because of the high savings. However, in much of the region covered by Romande Energie homeowners are paid only 9.5 cents per kWh for any excess electricity put into the grid. This makes the economics of adding extra panels producing electricity beyond what can be used uneconomic.
A study by EPFL concluded that if photovoltaic panels were installed on Switzerland 9.6 million rooftops the resulting power would meet more than 40% of Swiss electricity demand. The results showed that solar photovoltaic panels could be fitted to 55% of Switzerland’s total rooftop area. If panels were only installed on mainly south-facing rooftops, this could cover more than 40% of Switzerland’s electricity needs.