Here are the top 5 misconceptions about solar panels
THE solar panels are struggling to establish themselves on the French market. One house in four is equipped with solar panels in the Netherlands compared to one house in fifty in France. In addition to the high cost of a solar installation, of the order of 9000 euros, which constitutes a real obstacle, clichés about solar panels resist.
1. Solar panels don’t work in winter
“Certainly the best performance is in the summer, but the solar panels also work in the winter. They need light but not necessarily sunexplains Jean Rosado, managing director of Otovo France, a start-up specializing in solar panels. The energy supply therefore does not stop in winter.
2. Solar panels only work in the south of France
“It is a prejudice. Of course in Marseille, the panels work better than in Lille, but the panels work effectively regardless of the locality», Supports Jean Rosado. According to figures from the Solar Index provided by Otovo, in Marseille, consumers save 1,790 euros in savings per year the first year, and 53,700 euros over 30 years and in Lille they save 1,292 euros in savings the first year and 38,800 euros over 30 years, a difference of almost 15,000 euros certainly. However, the amount saved remains interesting in Lille as well. “The countries that install the most solar panels are the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium, but these are not the most generous places in sunshine and yet the panels work.t”, adds Jean Rosado.
3. Solar panels are made of rare earths
No rare earth is used in solar panels. They are made of silicon, extracted from sand or quartz, a semiconductor material. Glass, aluminum and copper, other components of a solar panel, are recyclable. The average recycling quota for such a product is 94%. According to the Ministry of Ecological Transition, since their creation, 15,000 tonnes of panels have been processed.
4. Solar panels are reserved for an elite
The solar panels are not very affordable, it is true. But solutions exist to acquire solar panels without benefiting from high incomes. The average basket is €9,900, according to David Suissa, commercial director of Avisun, a company specializing in photovoltaics. An installation is profitable between 10 and 15 years, which takes time. However, it is possible to rent solar panels over the long term. “We offer a rental offer from 50 euros per month. It is thus possible to equip yourself without investing too much money. The installation remains the property of Otovo for 20 years and the company thus intervenes in the event of a technical problem.», proposes Jean Rosado.
5. Solar panels make us completely self-sufficient
“The only real solution is the combination of several energy sources“says Thierry Chambon of the company Energisme, which has developed software capable of informing the user about his consumption, in comparison with that of the day before, the previous year or that of another building of the same type for social landlords, private landlords or companies. Residential solar will not be enough to meet France’s electricity needs. “It is estimated that we could produce a third of the electricity we would need in 2050 if we equipped all the roofs of France“, projects Jean Rosado. A substantial but insufficient percentage for the solar panels to be sufficient to supply all of France with electricity.