Working with South Africa’s new PV system incentives 

At the beginning of this year, the South African minister of finance Enoch Godongwana gave his annual budget speech, outlining how the government would approach various economic challenges in 2023. In this speech, Godongwana announced the launch of two new schemes to incentivise the uptake of rooftop PV projects — one for businesses and one for homeowners. 

Initially, these schemes sought to alleviate the costs of transitioning to solar power amidst some of the worst cases of blackouts the country had ever seen, thus reducing stress on the national grid. But now, even though Eskom had predicted that this winter would bring Stage 8 load shedding, the population has not had to endure anything above Stage 6 during the month of June. 

Whilst the reduction in planned blackouts will have been noticed by many home and business owners who may now see a light at the end of the energy crisis tunnel, most people know this will not last. Generation units are failing all the time and demand could easily outweigh capacity once the weather gets colder and energy consumption rises.   

So, how will the schemes keep up the momentum for PV projects at this uncertain time? Keep reading to find out what these initiatives offer and pick up some handy product recommendations from Renusol, a PV mounting expert! 

A more cost-effective way to purchase PV 

The first incentive unveiled by the South African government in the recent budget speech offered businesses the opportunity to reduce their taxable income by 125% of the cost of an investment in renewables. 

This generous proposition is not subject to any limitations and will be available for two years from its start date. Plus, it is much more generous than the previous equivalent scheme, which allowed businesses to deduct 50% of their renewable investments in the first year, 30% in the second and 20% in the third when embarking on PV projects of more than 1 MW, and 100% of costs in the first year for projects under 1MW. 

Moving onto the incentive for homeowners, this scheme allows individuals who install rooftop solar panels to claim a rebate of 25% of the cost of the panels, up to a maximum of R15 000. To qualify for the scheme, the panels must be new and unused, a part of a PV system connected to the main distribution of private residences and have a minimum capacity of 275W. Portable panels are not included in the scheme and nor are other system components, such as batteries and inverters. 

Whilst these incentives are not perfect, with many members of the solar industry criticising them for not covering enough of the costs of an entire PV system, they do make the price of transitioning to solar slightly more affordable. And with energy bills remaining high despite the drop in load shedding, cost-effectiveness is bound to be a top priority for South Africans. 

As such, installers should expect to continue seeing requests for residential and commercial PV systems this year — and will need to keep the cost of installation low to meet customer demands. Luckily, Renusol has just the solutions! 

The right mounting products 

Over its 25+ years of experience in the solar industry, Rensuol has amassed a vast portfolio of mounting products designed to suit different roof types and project requirements.  

For example, when working on residential PV installations, which typically take place on pitched roofs, installers can rely on Renusol’s dedicated mounting system: the VarioSole+ (VS+). As a universal system, the VS+ can be used on nearly all types of pitched roofs with roof hooks, hanger bolts, standing seam clamps and mounting rails. And because each component boasts a fuss-free design, they are quick and easy to use — saving on installation costs. 

Equally, Renusol supplies excellent metal roof mounting systems for commercial projects in its MetaSole+ (MS+) system. Comprising all the components required to mount panels on trapezoidal and corrugated sheet metal roofs whilst saving valuable space, this system comes without continuous rails and does not require pilot drilling. As a result, it is cheaper to store, transport and install, again cutting project costs.  

What’s more, Renusol supplies the universal RS1 clamp, which is suitable for both middle and end clamping. With an adjustable height, this product can be used to secure any framed 30mm to 50mm PV panel, meaning you have fewer components to purchase, track in your inventory and spend time fixing onsite. So, there are cost savings to be enjoyed throughout the entire value chain! 

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