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Govt Defines Criteria for Solar Panel Installations

Ljubljana, 23 September (STA) - The government amended on Thursday energy infrastructure regulations to specify in more detail which installations for producing power from renewable sources require a building permit. A one megawatt rated output cap has been set for solar panel installations.

The regulation was issued after several cases of building inspectors ordering property owners to tear down installed solar panels which had been built without building permits.

"The criteria are completely clear now. It is clear what kind of conditions investors need to meet...for devices that do not need a building permit," Economy Minister Darja Radic said after the government's session. She added safety had been the government's main concern.

In line with the new regulations, devices that do not need a building permit include solar panel installations with a rated output capacity of up to one megawatt. Moreover, cogenerators, devices using fuel cells and devices using wind power with a rated output capacity of less than 50 kilowatts will also be exempt from building permits.

The move comes after protests from the Slovenian photovoltaic industry against the claims of Environment Ministry that certain solar panel installations needed building permits.

The issue gained broad attention when building inspectors ordered the removal of the solar panel installation on the building of the Celje fairgrounds, a EUR 2m project which had qualified for state aid.

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