Solar energy remains profitable for Belgians

Even without subsidies or incentives. This tipping point, which experts call ‘grid parity’, means the Holy Grail in solar energy has been reached, a.o. found.

So says Flanders congressman Hermes Sanctorum of the Green party, of one the speakers during The Solar Future Belgium ’12 conference, held in Brussels on March 28th. ,,At first, solar energy was stimulated, nowadays it is slandered. A few years ago solar power was all people could talk about, now it can do no good anymore,” Sanctorum says. ,,Nevertheless I see a positive future ahead. I think the solar sector will survive this. There are a few hiccups to overcome, but they will be solved, especially because ‘grid parity’ is nearing. The question is how we will get through the transition.”

Although residential subsidies are decreasing and tax reductions for companies are abolished, prices of solar panels decrease because of enormous production figures in China. Thus solar power gets cheaper and cheaper and is able to compete with power form the grid. According to Sanctorum, investments in solar energy are still profitable.
The problem in Flanders is that all consumers of electricity have to pay for the green certificates for solar panels. ,,That’s an unjust situation. Families saw the invoice for their electricity rise enormously. Some can’t pay the bill any more. That’s why the support for solar energy went down.”

The congressman sees a solution in a better way to divide subsidy costs. Companies should pay their share, just as the government should and producers of nuclear energy. ,,Nuclear power plants are written-off long ago and make high profits. Our first focus should be to collect money there and invest it in renewable energy,” Sanctorum says.
In his view, Belgium companies should compete with the Chinese on the fields of innovation, know how and the search for better technologies. In doing so, they should be supported by the Belgium government, for instance with subsidies.

During The Solar Future Belgium ’12 conference top speakers, experts and CEO’s of major companies will focus on the best grow strategies for 2012 and 2013 and issues like: international developments and expert opinions on growth and business models of the future. The conference is organised by Solarplaza, which globally sets up high-level solar conferences for the photovoltaic solar energy (PV) industry.

The Solar Future: Belgium ’12

During The Solar Future: Belgium ’12, the current status of Belgium’s PV market will be further explained, analysed and interpreted – and its future mapped out – by a group of industry experts. This conference, which will take place on 28 March 2012 in Brussels, will provide a unique platform for national and international stakeholders and key players to meet, network and discuss the Belgian solar market.