This year's German Solar Prize goes to Heidelberg's municipal utility company, among others. The photovoltaic system implemented with Green Electricity funds on the roofs of three apartment buildings in Wieblinger Weg in Heidelberg convinced not only the tenants, but also the jury from EUROSOLAR e.V.
"As a municipal utility, they promote the participation of their customers in the energy transition. They are a role model and pioneer for other municipal utilities and have laid the foundation for many other tenant electricity models," the jury said in explaining its decision.
Stadtwerke Heidelberg has been implementing tenant electricity projects since 2015, although at the time there was no legal framework for such projects. One of these projects is located in Wieblinger Weg: With a total size of 200 square meters, a photovoltaic system with an output of 30 kilowatt peak generates green electricity that can be used by tenants with the help of a battery storage unit. The tenants are offered a two-tariff product, which is made up of solar power from their own roof and power from the grid. The cheaper solar power incentivizes the households to use it. The surplus electricity is fed into the grid as a green electricity-certified product.
The funding for the photovoltaic system comes from the green electricity-certified tariff offered by Stadtwerke Heidelberg. The seal of approval requires the energy provider to invest a fixed amount in energy transition projects for each kilowatt hour consumed under the certified tariff.