The question of whether solar panels are worth it in Ireland is valid, given the country’s often cloudy and rainy weather. However, the answer is a resounding yes. Let’s delve into why this is the case.
The Green Energy Movement in Ireland
The Role of Solar Energy in Ireland’s Renewable Energy Mix
Ireland has been making significant strides towards diversifying its renewable energy sources. In 2022, a new emphasis was placed on solar-powered energy after the European Commission announced that all new buildings must install solar panels under the Solar Rooftop initiative. Fifty thousand homes in Ireland have solar panels installed, with 17,000 solar installations connected to the grid in 2022.
The Impact of the EU’s Solar Strategy on Ireland
The EU’s REPowerEU plan, which includes a Solar Rooftop Initiative and an EU Solar Strategy, aims to double solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity by 2025 and install 600GW by 2030. These moves clarify that installing solar panels on public and private buildings is the way forward.
Types of Solar Panels
Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Panel
Solar PV panels turn sunlight into electricity. According to Alternative Energy Ireland, a medium-sized PV system generates about 3,000 units (kWh) of electricity each year, enough to cover about 70% of the annual electricity used in an average home in Ireland.
Solar Thermal (ST) Panels
Solar thermal panels use sunlight to heat the water in your home. They are designed to heat enough water to cover 50-60% of a household’s annual hot water requirements.
The Benefits of Solar Panels in Ireland
Lowering Your Carbon Footprint
Installing solar panels allows you to collect energy from the sun, lowering your dependence on fossil fuels to generate electricity, thus helping the environment as fewer greenhouse gases are released from burning gas, coal, and oil.
A Worthwhile Investment
In Ireland, due to our climate, 75% of the energy you generate from a solar PV system in your home will take place between May and September. However, that doesn’t mean solar panels are unsuitable for Irish weather; because they are. It doesn’t need to be mainly sunny for them to work.
The Cost of Solar Panels in Ireland
The Decreasing Costs of Solar PV Panels
In the last decade, the production costs of solar photovoltaic panels have plummeted by around 80%, meaning it’s become far cheaper. And in May, the Government reduced the VAT on the supply and installation of solar panels to zero.
SEAI Grants for Solar Panel Installation
The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) offers grants of up to €1,200 for installing solar water heating systems and up to €2,400 for Solar PV panels.
The Micro-generation Support Scheme
Selling Excess Electricity to the Grid
The Government’s Micro-generation Support Scheme allows you to sell any excess electricity your solar panels produce to the electricity grid for a profit. This payback scheme will allow you to reduce your bills even further, as you can make money off the electricity you produce.
In conclusion, solar panels are indeed worth it in Ireland. Solar panels can still generate significant electricity despite the country’s often cloudy weather. The benefits of solar panels extend beyond just energy production. They contribute to lowering carbon footprints, are a worthwhile investment, and can generate income through the Micro-generation Support Scheme.
Yes, solar panels are effective in Ireland’s climate. They do not require intense sunlight to generate electricity.
Two types of solar panels are available in Ireland: Solar Photovoltaic (PV) panels and Solar Thermal (ST) panels.
Yes, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) offers grants for installing solar water heating systems and Solar PV panels.
Yes, through the Government’s Micro-generation Support Scheme, you can sell any excess electricity your solar panels produce to the electricity grid for a profit.
Yes, solar panels are a good investment in Ireland. They can generate significant electricity, help lower your carbon footprint, and even generate income through the Micro-generation Support Scheme.