As much power as a nuclear power plant
New record for Swiss solar expansion
Switzerland installed an additional gigawatt of solar power last year. This corresponds to the output of the Gösgen nuclear power plant.
In 2022, Switzerland installed an additional gigawatt of solar power.
Danny SmurfEditor Sunday view
SVP Federal Councilor Albert Rösti (55) has taken over the Ministry of Energy, and nuclear proponents are feeling the upswing. The People’s Party makes security of supply a campaign issue and launches the referendum against the climate law. Has the energy transition failed?
New figures on the development of renewables in Switzerland speak against this. Solar energy is booming: the Swiss installed an additional gigawatt of solar power in 2022. This corresponds to the output of the Gösgen nuclear power plant. Compared to the previous year, the increase in solar power production is 25 percent, according to data from the Swiss Energy Charts website.
The local solar systems now supply 6.3 percent of the electricity requirement – 3.7 terawatt hours per year. “That’s no longer a homeopathic dose,” says energy expert Thomas Nordmann (70), publisher and operator of Swiss Energy Charts. He is convinced: “An annual increase of two gigawatts will soon be realistic.”
This could produce half of the energy required in Switzerland, says Noah Heynen (34), CEO of the solar company Helion. Only: Electrification in transport and heating drives up electricity consumption. Does the bill still add up? Heynen: “Electricity consumption is increasing, but we use four times less with e-cars and heat pumps
Energy than with fossil fuel drives and heaters. The bottom line is that we are making massive savings.”
And the availability? After all, the sun only shines during the day! The solution lies in the batteries of the electric cars, says Heynen, whose solar company was taken over by the car dealer Amag. “A battery like this can power a house for four days.”
Stefan Batzli (56), Managing Director of AEE Suisse, the industry’s umbrella organization for renewable energies, is preparing an industry campaign to support the Climate Protection Act. “We can achieve the goals of the energy transition if we consistently continue on the path we have taken,” says Batzli. “The new record for solar expansion confirms that.”