Environmental permit exemption for PVs between 0.5-1 MW

A recent ministerial decision concerning the environmental classification of RES projects has been published in the government gazette, enabling the utilization of benefits offered by recent environmental legislation to photovoltaics between 0.5 and 1 MW, no longer requiring environmental permits.

There has been considerable confusion about environmental permit requirements for this RES category as regional authorities have been inconsistent with their policies. Some have exempted PV installations from the need for environmental permits while others have not.

To contain the confusion, the energy ministry had advised regional authorities not to offer environmental permit exemptions until the delivery of its related ministerial decision. Even so, a significant number of projects were offered permit exemptions prior to the ministerial decision.

It remains unclear how authorities will go about processing PV projects that were exempted from environmental permits but have remained stagnant following connection offer applications submitted to distribution network operator DEDDIE/HEDNO.