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City of Berlin adopts plan to reach 25 percent solar power by 2050

The city of Berlin has adopted a plan to vastly expand the deployment of solar panels across the city’s rooftops, with the goal of supplying some 25 percent of the city’s electricity needs with solar power by 2050, pv magazine reports. The “Solarcity Master Plan” is part of Berlin’s plan to become carbon neutral by 2050, a target the city set even before the federal government adopted it last year. The plan approved by the Berlin senate on Tuesday was developed by the Fraunhofer ISE solar research institute and a panel of stakeholders from different sectors. It includes 27 recommendations to jump-start the solar expansion in Berlin, including education and incentives for property owners and the removal of regulatory barriers for photovoltaic systems. A coordinating office will oversee the effort.

An accompanying study from Fraunhofer ISE found that Berlin could generate 4.4 gigawatts (GW) of solar energy within the city by 2050, pv magazine reports. In a press release announcing the plan’s adoption, Berlin Senator Ramona Pop, of the Green Party, said the city needed more support and guidance from the German government, but couldn’t afford to wait: “It is necessary for the federal government to finally improve the legal framework for solar energy in the cities,” Pop said in the release. “Nevertheless, we want to actively use the existing options at the state level.” The city has already launched a subsidy program for solar storage systems, which covers 30 to 65 percent of the cost for storage systems installed in combination with a new photovoltaic system, pv magazine reports.

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