Support levels increased in German market incentive programme

The basic support for solar collectors for combined hot water generation and room heating thus rises for a limited period up to December 30, 2011 to 120 €/m2 of collector area. After this it returns to 90 €/m2.

The boiler exchange and the combination bonuses have also been increased. The former is granted for switching from an old heating boiler to a condensing boiler, while the latter is for combining a solar thermal system with a heat pump or biomass heating. Until the end of the year both bonuses lie at € 600, after which they then sink to € 500.

For heat pumps the required seasonal performance factor has been reduced. For example, brine/water and water/water heat pumps will now qualify for support from a seasonal performance factor of 3.8.

Reactions from the German renewable heating sector were mixed. The German Solar Industry Association welcomed the new support guidelines. “The very attractive support conditions are a clear signal for homeowners who need to modernise their heating system in the cellar,” declared vice president Helmut Jäger.

The reaction by the German section of the International Solar Energy Society (DGS) was somewhat more sober. Responding to the increase it demanded the establishment of an ongoing and reliable support programme. The background to this: since the government suspended support through the market incentive programme for two months in the spring of 2010, trust in this form of support has dropped.

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