Why solar power rarely shines in Mallorca

A home, with power of around 3-4 kW (kilowatts), would need to invest about 4,500 euros to purchase 14 solar panels.

The self-consumption of electricity in households has scarcely advanced six months after the adoption of the controversy law called “sun tax” (that might be removed), which, to the high investment for its implementation, is added as a complex bureaucracy, according to major associations of the sector.
“A home, with power of around 3-4 kW (kilowatts), would need to invest about 4,500 euros in the purchase of 14 solar panels,” says the president of the Spanish Photovoltaic Union (UNEF), Jose Donoso, a figure supported by the president of the National Association of Photovoltaic Energy Producers (Anpier), Miguel Angel Martinez.
“Much of the investment is to pay for the batteries which are the most expensive component,” says Martinez, who stresses, however, that these costs “are 75% cheaper than in 2007” by technological “huge improvement” of sector.
Once the investment is done, Anpier estimates that if “a pattern of programmed and disciplined consumption” is adopted, it can be amortized over 5 years while he believes that in the short term, once can save up to 50 % on the electricity bill, compared to the traditional consumption.
However, UNEF claim that the “normal” amortization time would be 15 years with the current law and 10 years without it, “because of the barriers and tolls to pay” and that in his opinion seeks to “discourage the development of renewable energy. “

Solar panels in Mallorca remain few

In this sense, both associations agree that the law introduces “such bureaucracy than it is normal that few people are encouraged to install solar panels in their home.”
Regardless of the system power, according to the law, an individual who wants to consume their own solar power should, in general, obtain a municipal permit, notify the installation to their electric company to change the mode of contract and register with the Ministry Industry as a self-producer.
For now, there are only 49 registered facilities with power of less than 10 kW – usually installed in independent houses as flats are not allowed to benefit from it – and 132 with an output between 10 and 100 kW, numbers the sector considers “low” due to “administrative obstacles”.
“Worst of all is that individuals should ask their electricity distributor for the authorization to have the installations and, obviously, if they can complain or slow down the process, they will,” said Martinez, who also complains about the time it takes for the administration to give an answer.

Installing can be done, with all permits, within 6 months,” says Donoso “much longer than in the rest of Europe, even though we are the country of the sun”, says Martinez .
According to the sector, Spain could be a “big European power” concerning the self-consumption of solar energy, and believe that all products related to this energetic source – panels and accessories-could become domestic consumer goods.

Ikea Spain wants to sell solar panels in Mallorca

For large retailers, such as Ikea Spain -the British subsidiary started selling photovoltaic panels again in April- it is also necessary that “the situation in law and legal matters is clearer in Spain in the long term for customers to invest safely in solar panels. ”
Ikea also notes that Spain is listed for the launch of this product, but predicts that its implementation in the domestic market will not happen before 2017.
Moreover, major Spanish electricity companies have also begun to look at this market and, for example, Iberdrola already offers an integrated  package to launch a solar installation subsistence for homes, factories and irrigation systems.

What do you think about solar panels and self-consumption in Mallorca? Would you consider installing some? Is the “sun tax” repelling you? Or do you have some at home? Tell us about your experience!

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2 thoughts on “Why solar power rarely shines in Mallorca

  1. As we have no mains electricity in our finca (or indeed, at our end of the road!) we rely totally on our 20 solar panels, a set of batteries and a back-up generator.
    I believe there is no regulation on “going solar” in properties without a mains supply but that aside, we had 3 panels on our roof when we moved in a few years back and have changed the rather poor system for the 20 new panels, an Outback Inverter + 2 charge controllers and a battery pack. The generator auto-starts only when necessary and switches off automatically as well. It has been a good learning curve but in the end, it has been worth it!

    1. wow this is so great that you’re only relying on solar panels! And even more cool that you didn’t have to go through all the paperwork and administration process!
      Thank you for showing us that, indeed, it’s possible to take advantage of the Mallorcan sun! Enjoy 🙂

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