Grant Scheme for commercial Renewable Heating Projects

Since 2008, the Norwegian government has offered a case-by-case subsidy for sports facilities or businesses, which would like to replace their old heating system by a new one receiving its energy from renewable sources. The programme itself is run by Enova, a public enterprise owned by the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy. Support is granted after a financial evaluation of every project applying for a subsidy. The evaluation on a case-by-case basis will help to determine the precise level of support a certain project will need to secure a reasonable rate of return, which, at the moment, translates into 8 % before taxes.

The subsidy, however, is capped at 0.8 NOK/kWh relating to the annual energy output of the system. This limitation has caused problems for supporting new solar thermal installations: “They are too expensive and therefore only very few systems have been supported by the Small Heating Plant Scheme over the last years,” Enova’s Trond Bratsberg explains. 0.8 NOK/kWh equals 0.12 EUR/kWh. With regard to an average energy production of a solar thermal system of around 400 kWh/m2, this adds up to a maximum of only 38 EUR/m2 of installed collector area.

Country / region Norway
Name of programme Grant Scheme for “Small Heating Plants”
Type of incentive Subsidies provided on a case-by-case basis
Eligible technologies Small Heating Plants driven by renewable energy sources, such as solar energy or biomass
Applicable sectors Commercial and public buildings, sports facilities and industrial buildings, as well as several combinations of these.  
Amount Supported are investments in heating plants / boilers and distribution facilities between various buildings and facilities. This includes the necessary equipment and facilities to ensure energy supply. Demand is documented by an investment analysis. Support is limited to a maximum ROI of 8% (before tax). Subsidies are capped at 0.80 NOK/kWh relating to the annual energy output of the system.
Maximum incentive Enova has prepared an investment calculator for determining profitability and the support to be granted. The investment calculator is based in part on predefined values, including the economic life-cycle of the system, and alternative energy prices. It will give an indication of whether the project is eligible at any support level. There is a link to the investment calculator on Enova’s website under the Market Area Heating section.
Requirements for system
  • Plant with a minimum life-cycle of 15 years
  • Based on realistic economic assumptions
  • Project includes space heating
Finance provider ENOVA SF (public enterprise owned by the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy)
Total funds NOK 3 billion annually for several renewable energy and energy efficiency programmes
Effective date Start in 2008, revised in January 2010
Expiration date Unlimited: Subsidy schemes are under continuous evaluation. If a scheme is found inapt for the purpose it is to fulfil, it will be either closed or revised.
Last review of this tabloid January 2018

Enova Answers –

Professional actors:
Tel. 08049 (within Norway) or +47 73190430 (international)



Baerbel Epp

Bärbel Epp is Founder and Director of the German communication and market research agency solrico and editor-in-chief of