Showing posts with label solar law. Show all posts
Showing posts with label solar law. Show all posts

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Solar Hot Water Systems in Israel


Solar Hot Water Heaters in Israel
Solar Hot Water Heaters in Israel
Photo credit:
I continue my series on solar water heaters with the interesting information that more than 90% of Israeli households have solar water heating systems. Today, Israel is the world’s largest per capita user of solar water heaters. Actually, solar hot water systems are so popular in Israel because by law, all houses constructed in Israel must have them installed.

These heaters were first installed during the 1950's when Israel experienced a fuel supply shortage and severely restrictions were placed on the times when people could heat their water. As a result, many Israelis started to purchase and install solar water heaters on the rooftops of their homes.

In 1983, about 60% of the population heated their water with the sun. Eventually, a law was passed making solar heating mandatory for new residential buildings. The law has saved Israel and its citizens millions of shekels in energy costs. And each year it is also saving between 2% and 3% of the country's electricity needs.

Over the years, the solar hot water systems improved and mass production lowered the cost, so that more companies entered the field. Today purchasing and installing (usually by the builders) a solar water heating system is common practice.

The country’s leader in solar water heating sector is Chromagen with a range of thermo-tanks from 30 to 300 liters capacity linked to solar collector panels. The company produces small and large systems for domestic and industrial purposes. The systems are suitable for households, hotels, hospitals, senior citizens homes, swimming pools and other commercial uses.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Mandatory solar panels in German town of Marburg


Solar Panelsin German town Marburg

The central German town of Marburg is the first in German to make solar panels mandatory for almost all rooftops of private and commercial buildings. The controversial new law requires a solar panel for every new building and every old building that is being renovated. The historical buildings such as the Marburg Castle, Marburg's City Hall, and the Elisabeth Church will be exempt from the requirement.

The solar law was approved by the town's council on June 20, and will take effect Oct. 1. According to the law, a 1 square meter (10 square feet) panel must be installed for every 20 square meters (200 square feet) of surface area. Installing the panels could cost homeowners up to €5,000 ($7,800). The cost would be paid off through savings in energy bills over a 15-year period, the town's mayor, Franz Kahle, said. Those violating the law will face fines starting at €1,000 ($1,500).

The town is home to Marburg University and has about 80,000 residents. Most of the residents support the decision made by the Social Democrats and Greens, but the opposition leaders say that to force people to equip their homes with solar panels equates to a "green dictatorship," and that "nobody dares to say anything."

"Sometimes you must force the hand of consumers for their own good", says the specialist in solar Vajen Klaus, a professor at the University of Kasel.