German tender for rooftop installations another complete failure

In the latest tender for »second segment« solar installations under the German Renewable Energy Law (EEG), i.e., installations on buildings and noise barriers, the German Federal Network Agency recorded only 58 successful bids for a total capacity of 105 megawatts (MW) at the December 1 bid deadline. By contrast, 202 MW had been put out to tender, and this was already an adjustment in line with the two previous, significantly undersubscribed tenders. At the last deadline (August 1), 767 MW had been tendered, but bids had been received for only 214 MW.
The volume-weighted average award was 8.74 euro cents (9.28 US cents) per kilowatt-hour, down 1.1 percent from the previous round (8.84 euro cents/kWh) despite the significant signing.
A low level of participation was to be expected because, as of next year, the mandatory capacity limit for participation in rooftop tenders will increase from the current 300 kilowatts to a megawatt system size. The federal government is thus correcting the system introduced by the preceding government. The German Solar Industry Association (BSW Solar) also sees a general problem for commercially operated rooftop systems due to insufficient funding incentives and high bureaucratic barriers. While demand for small, privately operated systems has increased by 45 percent in the current year, »it slumped by 35 percent for commercial rooftops.«
In the simultaneous tender for »innovative concepts« – these are in particular plants with different types of generation – 397 MW were put out to tender, but only one bid was received, for a combination of photovoltaics and storage. This was the first »innovation tender« in which the award value was not a fixed premium paid in addition to the marketing proceeds of the electricity, but a »sliding market premium« that is offset against the marketing proceeds. In this respect, there is no longer any incentive for such projects, which can achieve good prices in free marketing, to participate in complicated tenders.

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