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Distributed solar generation rising in Germany, with potential across Europe – study

The number of sites that both operate PV solar systems and consume some of that energy on-site increased by 100,000 between February 2019 and January 2020, said the German Solar Association (BSW). Those sites include individual homes, businesses and community solar projects. This model of distributed solar generation and consumption can be extremely efficient and has the potential for greater expansion both in Germany and across Europe, according to the EU-funded research project PVP4Grid, said BSW. “Every kilowatt hour used on site avoids the generation, transport and associated losses of centrally- and often still fossil fuel-generated electricity,” commented BSW CEO Carsten Körnig. The research project found that combining solar PV systems, energy storage and charging points for electric vehicles leads to particularly high rates of on-site energy consumption, and notes that if grid operators adopt the necessary control systems, these sites can help stabilise power grids. The project has released guidelines for the deployment of such systems in eight European countries, including Germany.

Meanwhile, solar PV installations are still going forward across Germany, despite the coronavirus pandemic, pv magazine reports. Germany currently bans meetings of more than two people who do not share a household, but since most installations require only two people, that work has been able to continue, as long as workers adhere to social distancing requirements, the article says.Germany’s solar industry entered 2020 poised for a major revival, but still faces key regulatory hurdles and the uncertainty brought on by the coronavirus crisis.

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