The up and down in the German Market Rebate Programme for Renewable Energies (MAP) continues. Just in time for the beginning of the ISH, the worldwide largest trade fair for bathroom, building, energy and climate technology in Frankfurt, Germany, the Ministry of Environment published its new conditions for the MAP subsidy programme, which covers solar thermal installations, biomass boilers and heat pumps. The new regulations came into force on the same day, the 15 March (see database of incentive programmes).
The directive includes three major improvements referring to last year’s July version, when the programme was restarted after a three-month break with reduced levels of incentives.
- The subsidy rate for solar collectors of combined hot water and space heating installations will temporarily increase from 90 to 120 EUR/m2, until 30 December 2011. Next year, the funding level will be back to 90 EUR/m2.
- The bonus that is paid when replacing the old boiler with a condensing boiler will be temporarily increased from EUR 400 to EUR 600 until the end of the year. Next year, a boiler replacement bonus of EUR 500 will be paid.
- The “combi bonus” that is paid when a heat pump or a biomass boiler is combined with a solar thermal system increased from EUR 500 to EUR 600, until 30 December 2011 and will be reduced to EUR 500 again next year.
The reactions by the German renewable associations were mixed. The German Solar Industry Association (BSW Solar) described the funding conditions “as attractive and a clear signal for homeowners with modernisation needs”. 15 % of the investment costs for a modern, environmentally friendly heating system are subsidised in an average household. The German Solar Energy Society (DGS) criticised the subsidy scheme MAP in its current form as “counterproductive and equipped with inappropriate funding to reach the national targets of 20% renewable heat by 2020”.