JULIE CHAUVEAU LES ECHOS
Finished the big Wow on green growth, live "controlled growth" of the photovoltaic industry. Such might be summarized the new policy of the Government in the wake of the announcement of a decline in rate of redemption of solar energy to 12. Individuals who are still in the ear the speeches of the Grenelle of the environment have no reason to panic. They retain the possibility to resell their electricity EDF high price (58 cents per kilowatt hour) if they chose the so-called "integrated" solar panels, replacing the tiles and not not simply superimposed on their roof.
But, for more than a year, the authorities saw with concern climb the number of requests for connection to the network by owners of commercial buildings, or of farmers willing to constitute a source of additional revenue by installing solar panels on their sheds. They had even encouraged by the agricultural unions to do so and the Ministry of Agriculture had multiplied statements on energy independence of farms.
The threat of creating a bubble stated in effect: analysis performed by the services of the Department of Ecology had identified 20,000 requests for installation of large representative 3.800 potential megawatts. At the time, the Government had attempted to cool the machine at the beginning of the year. Redemption rates had been reduced by 17 to 30, and it was decided to limit their indexing to inflation in the long term. But this measure had not prevented the installers to continue to solicit potential clients, and the forecast for the year 2010 all show that 850 megawatts should be installed, either a multiplication by 5 of the Park in a year.
In the greatest secrecy, last April, Bercy and the Department of ecology were then commissioned the former Director General of Insee Jean-Michel Charpin to identify the public aid granted to the sector, to analyse their profitability and assess the impact on the finances of the State. It is from this report that the Government announced Monday its decision to lower rates of 12 and fixed at 500 megawatts per year the maximum power that can benefit from the tariff benefits.
Good report Charpin leaves travelling show that some have argued for a ceiling at 300 megawatts by year 2020, but this would have represented a retreat from the promise of the Grenelle of the environment. The report stresses the fact that the panels manufacturing costs declined by 30 in one year, the Germany decided for the second time this year to reduce its rates, and that the Spain has selected each quarter to determine the number of potential projects to avoid being overwhelmed. And in a time of budgetary rigour, the arguments showing that photovoltaic electricity is the most expensive renewable energy have also weighed. A ground facility costs more than 200 euros per MWh, against 60 for hydropower or wind 70 land. "Escalations loads on consumer electricity bill could exceed EUR 1.5 billion per year by 2012, or approximately 60 euros per year for household heating to electricity", insisted on last night in Bercy prior to specify that the highest scenario "17 gigawatts by 2020", could have a burden of EUR 4.5 billion on public service of electricity by 2020. Some observers however noted that the France decides to stop while she is very caught up with her behind the Germany, which has installed more than power 10 times. They also recall that the France made a commitment to dispose of 21 renewable energy by 2020.
Will the new Government strategy definitively address the speculative risk without breaking the connection "To avoid the" runaways "and detrimental to the industrial sector stops, it will be necessary to implement a system of purchase rates AutoSize on volumes of projects", says the report. The Government has already warned professionals further annual decline of 10 of the rates is provided from January 1, 2012. And it has well quickly start negotiations on how to manage the annual quota of permissions available.