With the massive acceptance, adoption, and utilization of solar energy among several countries across the world, even small territories such as the Canary Islands are turning towards solar energy sources for their electricity needs. Installing solar panels on buildings does not take long, and over the past decades, the Canary Islands have increased their electricity generation and, consequently, consumption via renewable energy sources.
In 2019, the Canary Islands generated about 16% of its total energy consumption from renewable energies. A year later, this grew to 17.5%, and it’s speculated to grow further in subsequent years.
As a country located between the Southwestern region of Spain and the Northwestern region of Africa, it receives abundant sunlight throughout the year. This has been taken advantage of, as seen in the rapid rise of PV systems installations, both rooftop solar and ground-mounted sustainable energy systems, to generate electricity.
The Canary Islands has also played a key role in developing renewable energy by providing subsidies and incentives via feed-in tariffs and tax credits designed to make renewable energy technologies more accessible to the residents.
The Establishment of a 255MW Solar Plant
In 2021, the European Union and the Spanish government, in a bid to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, provided funding for solar projects to boost existing power generation systems in the Canary Islands. The project included the construction of 65 solar plants across the Canary Islands. This financing was provided through the SolCan program. The primary purpose of this project was to reduce electricity prices and fossil fuel consumption.
The 255MW solar project was estimated to be completed by 2022 and is said to be a significant contributor to the renewable energy mix on the islands. Others include wind energy, geothermal energy, and tidal energy. Out of the 65 projects to be supported by the SolCan scheme, a vast majority (36) of them will be situated in Gran Canaria, 18 plants in Fuerteventura, six plants in Tenerife, four plants in Lanzarote, and one plant in La Gomera.
The growth of solar energy supply still has a long way to go as the islands depend on fossil fuels such as natural gas and petrol to ensure energy supply. This energy production is supplemented by renewable energy. The Canary Islands are not connected to the mainland electricity grid for electricity supply, so it’s just down to fossil fuel and renewable energy options.
The SolCan program represents the third phase of Spain’s renewable energy program. According to Spain’s Ministry of Energy, one of the key objectives of the Integrated National Energy and Climate Plan is to promote renewable energy in its islands as they’re the perfect locations for testing technologies or implementing policies that can be imported to Spain’s mainland.
There’s talk of the government’s plans to establish a floating solar pilot project on the Canary Islands. This 250kWp project will be designed to face high winds and waves of up to 33 meters.
The Benefits of Solar Energy in the Canary Islands
The government’s decision to support projects that incorporates solar energy into the energy mix is because of certain reasons, including:
Installing an off-grid system includes energy storage systems that ensure continuous electricity supply when the solar panels can’t get energy from sunlight. As solar panels get energy from the sun during the day, it does two things – power the home and use the excess electricity generated to charge the solar battery. When the sun sets, the energy storage takes over.
Utilization of Natural Resources
Solar energy, just like wind energy, pumped storage hydropower plants, geothermal energy, and other renewable energy options, utilizes natural resources in the environment to meet energy demand. Renewable energy has zero impact on the environment, unlike fossil fuels, which have a great environmental impact and pollute the environment. This helps on reducing the carbon footprint in the environment. Solar energy harnesses the sun; wind energy comes from wind turbines harnessing the wind; tidal energy harnesses ocean waves and tides; and geothermal energy harnesses the heat energy from sub-surface fluids and rocks.
Solar power is cost-effective in the long run because during the period it will serve you (at least 20 years), you’ll save money on electricity bills or fuel costs. Additionally, a solar energy system is low-maintenance. After purchasing and installing it, it basically pays for itself over time.
A renewable-energy-based system makes the home self-sufficient because it generates electricity. Homes with surplus power can even provide electricity for other homes.
What to Look for in a Solar Installer in the Canary Islands
While the concept of solar energy is no longer new, several residents on the island are novices. They may not know what to look for when looking for an installer to set up off-grid solar systems (isolated power systems) that will provide long-term energy solutions. This is where we come in.
Consider how long the company has been in business. The longer, the better. Industry experience ties to track record because a company with at least a decade of experience in the industry will most likely have a better portfolio than a company that’s less than 3-4 years in the industry.
Some companies charge affordable fees for their services, while others are more expensive. We recommend going for affordable installers, especially if you’re a budget-conscious homeowner. A good way to get the best deal is by comparing 3-5 companies.
Their Range of Services
For some companies, their primary focus is the installation, while others may add remote monitoring, system security, maintenance, and other services. Go for companies that offer more services.
How Long Will It Take
Installing a solar system shouldn’t take more than a day. At most, two days. Some companies are tied down with work and may be unable to handle the project on time. While making inquiries, ask how long it will take them to come to your home, carry out the site assessment, and install the system on your property. We recommend settling for companies that are ready to work within the week.
Certifications or Qualifications
This is arguably the most important thing to look out for. Ensure the company you’re hiring is certified by the government to install solar systems and storage capacities.
Information on Solar Rebate Programs
Certain installers in the Canary Islands inform their clients about solar rebate programs that could offset some of the cost of purchasing and installing a solar system.
Top Solar Companies in the Canary Islands
This company is one of the best because it offers its clients grants and bonuses that enable them to save money on the cost of setting up a solar system. It offers IBI and ICIO bonuses which vary based on where you stay. Residents of Santa Cruz de Tenerife who pay 200 euros of IBI can save the same amount every year for five years. Residents in neighboring islands enjoy similar benefits.
Estudio Termosolar also offers a personal income tax bonus which gives a 20-40% deduction on your income statement, helping you to save up to 1,500 euros.
When it comes to grants, clients can earn 2k euros for a solar system without batteries and 4k euros for a system with batteries. The company also offers payback periods for its clients to pay for system purchases gradually. Estudio Termosolar has 7 certifications. Working hours are 9 am – 5 pm (Mon – Thur) and 9 am – 2:30 pm (Fri).
- Address: Calle Aires de Lima nº40
- Phone: +34922383807
Solarland S.L Energias Renewable
This company is a foremost designer, distributor, marketer, installer, and maintainer of solar panel systems in the Canary Islands. It specializes in isolated photovoltaic solar energy systems, installations solar power CR self-consumption, solar thermal pool air-conditioning, ACS solar thermal energies, and subsidy management.
Solarland has over two decades of industry experience. Its operating hours are from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm. It’s based on the Island of Fuerteventura.
- Address: C/ La Vista 6, Villaverde 35640, La Oliva
- Phone: +34928868081
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org