The Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Regulatory Authority will make a first proposal by the end of the summer to lift the temporary restriction on the connection of small household-scale power plants to the grid. The connection of solar panels to the grid could also be helped by the government’s support of HUF 120 billion (EUR 315 million) for the construction of industrial-scale battery energy storage, reports Világgazdaság.
According to the Energy Ministry, the phasing-out of the temporary measure could start from October, as a timetable set out in the government decree shows. The temporary measure was adopted by the government in the autumn, after domestic installed capacity grew at record pace last year and the high rate of growth could not be matched by the modernization of the electricity grid.
As a result, a restriction on the injection of electricity not used locally into the public grid was introduced in the autumn.
This caused problems for many, as the extra energy generated by the solar panels could no longer be fed into the public grid, and citizens lost out on a financial rebate. Before the restriction, the system operated on a balance settlement basis, whereby only the difference between the energy produced by the solar panels and the energy consumed by the household had to be settled. If users consumed more, they paid the extra to the electricity supplier.
If, however, more energy was produced, the excess was reimbursed by the electricity supplier.
Therefore, for private individuals, this could pay for the investment in solar panels within six to eight years, while for smaller companies it could pay for the investment in one or two years.
Back then, the Hungarian Solar Panel Association criticized the government’s decision to suspend the grid feed-in of electricity generated by future solar systems, saying it was contrary to the interests of the sector, the population, and the country.
Under the current provision, a decision on the fate of the temporary suspension will be made after a thorough analysis of the supply and grid situation, and a new government decree will set out the timetable for this. In light of the available data, the Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Regulatory Authority will prepare a proposal for the first time by the end of August 2023. After that, the government will decide where to lift the blocking and where to maintain it.
The Energy Ministry has pointed out that
renewable energy sources will continue to play a key role in meeting the country’s electricity needs, in addition to nuclear energy, as government measures will significantly promote the expansion of clean solar capacity.
The use of intermittent renewables will also be supported by tenders for the construction of industrial battery energy storage facilities, which will be launched in the spring with a total budget of 120 billion forints (EUR 315 million).
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