Last year was the first in which all 26 Swiss cantons have had their own financial support mechanism for solar thermal. For a 5 m² solar thermal system, these subsidies cover, on average, 20% of the investment costs, plus tax reductions that go even up to 40%. But the amount of support does vary a lot. The chart shows the ten cantons with the highest incentive for solar thermal.
The financial support mechanisms in Switzerland differ a lot in size between cantons: Each canton administration defines its own amount of subsidies and tax reductions. The Solar Association of Switzerland (Swissolar) has now published an overview comparing subsidies and tax reductions for a 5 m² solar thermal system. Grants range from CHF 1,200 in the canton of Grisons to CHF 6,750 in Basel-Town, tax reductions from CHF 547 (Canton of Lucerne) to CHF 4,536 (Canton of Neuchâtel).
Assuming that a 5m² solar thermal system would cost an average CHF 14.000, the subsidies and tax reductions together cover between 20% (Canton Lucerne) and 65% (Canton Basel-Town) of the total investment costs. Frontrunner Basel-Town is followed by Zug (46%) and Solothurn canton (43%). In some cases, there are further differentiations in subsidy levels within a canton. Swissolar has compiled a 10-page dossier, which gives an overview about the support measures at the national, cantonal and community level. The single paragraphs are each written in the individual cantonal language German, Italian or French.
This text was written by Stephanie Banse, a German journalist specialised on solar thermal technology. (firstname.lastname@example.org)