8 November 2023

Solnet Group at RE-Source: A Journey Through the Changing Landscape of Solar Energy

Solnet Group's commitment to sustainability and renewable energy has been a driving force behind our participation in the RE-Source event for the past five years. As a leading advocate of solar energy solutions, we are happy to share our experiences from this year's event, which was the most active and promising yet. 

During this year's RE-Source event, we observed significant shifts in the discussions reflecting the evolving landscape of the renewable energy industry. One of the notable trends we observed at this year's RE-Source event was the heightened interest in on-site solar solutions. In the past, discussions often revolved around the challenges of energy consumption being too high for on-site installations. However, this year, the dialogue shifted towards the possibility of implementing on-site solar systems. This shift in attitude reflects a growing awareness and acceptance of the potential benefits of on-site solar energy generation.

We also noticed an increased interest in the safety of solar plants in light of recent developments. Solnet Group's SVP of Business Development, Arttur Kulvik, participated in a panel discussion on on-site decarbonization strategies, highlighting the importance of solar safety. Smart solar solutions are crucial in fulfilling all safety requirements, as they offer increased safety with optimizers. Georg Stockschlaeder from the insurance company Zurich mentioned that they are going to publish a new white paper on safety for solar projects soon, including a recommendation on using optimizers. Read our page on solar safety and download our whitepaper for more in-depth information on this important topic.

Exploring the Expansion of Solar Capacity

Conversations at the event indicated that many companies have taken steps to deploy solar, emphasizing the progress the industry has made over the years. However, it is not the end of the road for solar energy because there is a lot of potential still out there. Over 90 % of rooftops in the EU are still empty and not deployed with solar yet. The real buzz this year was surrounding balancing markets and the emergence of virtual power plants. This demonstrates that the industry is evolving and seeking new ways to optimize the potential of solar energy by integrating it more effectively into the power grid. Solnet Group is excited to be part of this dynamic shift in the renewable energy landscape. 

Another interesting insight from this year's RE-Source event was the varying levels of experience among participants. While some attendees were relatively new to solar energy solutions, others had previous experiences, which may not have been entirely positive. It was heartening to observe that Solnet's message of making solar easy resonated with the audience. As a company committed to providing accessible and reliable solar solutions, we were able to engage with both beginners and those who had previous experiences and possible disappointments with the technology.

The Renewed Focus on Energy Storage 

Energy storage solutions were once again in the spotlight at this year's RE-Source event. With the increasing need for grid stability and reliability, energy storage has gained significance as a vital component of the renewable energy infrastructure. The discussions highlighted the role of energy storage in ensuring a consistent and sustainable energy supply. It is evident that energy storage is not just a trend; it is a crucial element of the future of renewable energy.

One remarkable observation was the resilience of the renewable energy sector in the face of economic downturns and fluctuating interest rates. Despite the challenges posed by economic uncertainties, investments in renewable energy continue to thrive. This resilience underscores the growing recognition of the long-term economic and environmental benefits of solar energy. Solnet Group is proud to be a part of this sustainability-focused movement that transcends economic fluctuations.

The updated EU-wide Solar Standard

EU has been supporting renewable energy with several directives such as REPowerEU and Green Deal but has now published a new Energy Performance in Buildings Directive (still subjective to negotiations) which is a continuation for EU's solar strategy. This new directive includes some postponements to the earlier published Solar Rooftop Initiative. The regulatory requirements of this directive are that solar must be installed on all new public and C&I buildings above 250m2 from 2027 (previously 2026) and new residential buildings from 2030 (2029). The existing C&I buildings need to have solar installations following a renovation or change to the building permit from 2028. And all public buildings should be equipped with solar by 2030. 

Solnet Group's participation in the RE-Source event for five years has allowed us to witness the transformation of the renewable energy industry firsthand. This year's event was a testament to the changing landscape of solar energy, with increased interest in on-site solutions, the rise of balancing markets and virtual power plants, and the growing importance of energy storage. As we move forward, Solnet Group remains committed to delivering innovative and sustainable solar energy solutions that contribute to a brighter, greener future. We are excited to continue our journey in the evolving renewable energy industry and look forward to many more years of sponsoring and participating in the RE-Source event.

Joanna Viileinen,
Head of Marketing and Communication