Diligence in the disbursement of subsidies for domestic and business self-consumption is also a tale of two Spains. Delays in the granting of aid from European funds are common currency in practically the entire country, but the differences in the execution rates of one autonomous community and another are very substantial: up to 60 percentage points, according to the figures from the Institute for Energy Diversification and Saving (IDAE) to which EL PAÍS has had access.
At one extreme, three autonomies in the northern half of the country – La Rioja, the Basque Country and Castilla y León – lead the table in terms of agility in the distribution of funds, with execution rates of 66%, 62% and 60%. %—respectively—on the assigned budget. On the opposite side, Extremadura, the Region of Murcia and the Principality of Asturias are the furthest behind (6%, 12% and 18%) and, therefore, those in which households and companies take the longest to receive the requested money. Paradoxically, the first two are among the Spanish communities with the best solar resources and, therefore, where the panels perform the most.
Among the most populated communities, Madrid is the one that comes out best in the latest IDAE data update: it is fourth, with 53% of resolutions on the budget allocated for self-consumption and renewables in the residential, industrial and service sectors. Quite the opposite of Andalusia, which is fifth from bottom with 30%. Catalonia, for its part, is in the lower-middle zone of the table, with an execution of 38%.
Delays in the deployment of money from the European post-pandemic recovery plan are widespread and are by no means limited to the panels on the roof. As this newspaper announced on Monday, the autonomies as a whole have executed less than half of the funds available for energy actions: 46%, a figure notably lower than that of the central Administration.
At the beginning of November, the addendum agreed with the European Commission expanded by 500 million euros the funds to be distributed by the autonomous communities to promote the installation of photovoltaic panels in homes and companies. Good news blurred, however, by the continuous delays in delivering the money to the beneficiaries.
Both the recipients of the subsidies and the associations in the renewable sector have been calling for greater regional agility for months in the management of aid that both companies and families usually include in their calculations when they make the decision to put panels on the roof. The Spanish Photovoltaic Union (UNEF), for example, has suggested on several occasions that much of the slowdown in the pace of adoption of self-consumption—after the boom of 2021 and, above all, 2022—is directly attributable to the slowness of the communities autonomous in the payment of subsidies.
The average domestic self-consumption installation in Spain was 4.7 kilowatts (KW) in 2023, according to data recently published by the APPA Renovables employer association, with an average investment of just over 7,000 euros. In the case of industry, the average self-consumption system had 91.3 KW of power and involved an outlay of 69,000 euros.
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