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City of Berlin to pass law making solar panels mandatory on new buildings

Germany’s capital Berlin aims to take another step towards climate neutrality with a law to expand the number of solar panels on roofs, Tanja A. Buntrock writes in Der Tagesspiegel. The regional parliament is set to vote on 2 March on the law, which would make solar energy compulsory for new buildings and on existing buildings with a surface of more than 50 square metres in case of renovation from 1 January 2023. “With the solar law, we are making Berlin a role model in terms of climate protection and energy transition for other states and municipalities,” economy senator Ramona Pop (Green Party) said. Exceptions are provided for cases when a roof faces North or when the installation of solar panels is “technically impossible,” Tagesspiegel writes.

Berlin aims to cover 25 percent of its electricity needs with solar energy by 2050 the latest. The “Solarcity Master Plan” is part of Berlin’s plan to become carbon neutral by 2050, a target the city set itself even before the federal government adopted it in 2019. Since last year, Berlin’s state government has been subsidising private individuals, companies and non-profit associations with up to 15,300 euros for the installation of solar power batteries, according to Tagesspiegel. More than 730 applications with a volume of around two million euros had been submitted by the end of January this year and just under 500 applications were approved, Tagesspiegel writes.

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