Capital grants for solar thermal in the domestic sector 2006-2014
First government grant for solar water heaters for households was established in 2005 and went into effect in 2006. At the beginning rebate was set on 20% of the purchase price capped at maximum level of €116.48. During 2006 the rebate was doubled to €232.94 which in consequence tripled rate of poor uptake from the beginning of the year.
For period of 2009-2010 the rebate was further increased to 66% of eligible costs up to a maximum of €460 increasing the uptake of this technology. An increase in retailers was seen in this grant scheme and hence more competitiveness was created in the solar water heating market. The 2009 scheme was a two-fold success in that not only did the market share of solar water heaters increase but this scheme also introduced standards which the products bought through the scheme had to conform to, namely, EN-12976 for solar water heaters and EN-12975 for solar collectors. The introduction of conformance of the products to these EU standards to be eligible for grants helped to eliminate lower quality products from the market and made consumers demand higher quality products. Eligible applicants were the domestic/residential sector.
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