The government has decided to provide more incentives for solar energy used in households and schools, saying it will double the subsidies provided for the installation of solar power equipment. Let’s take a look.
This household received a government subsidy to install solar power panels. Even though it uses two air conditioners and four refrigerators, its monthly electricity bill did not surpass 42 dollars during last summer's unusually hot weather.
[Soundbite] Kim Myung-ja(Seoul Resident) : "Before, we were preoccupied with saving electricity,but now we can use our air conditioners as much as we want when it's hot. We don't need to worry,as our electricity bill was only 42 dollars a month."
This family received about 1,100 dollars from the government for installing its solar panels. But starting next year, the subsidy will be doubled, which will allow households to install solar power equipment at even lower cost. Moreover, anyone regardless of their monthly electricity use will be eligible for the solar power subsidies.This is all part of the government's new plan to promote the use of renewable energy in the nation.
[Soundbite] Joo Hyung-hwan(Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy) : "We will eliminate the price risk for new renewable energy to encourage individuals and financial institutions to invest in renewable energy."
The existing 50-percent subsidy for installing mini-solar panels on apartment balconies will be expanded by an additional 25 percent. To ensure stable profits for new renewable energy businesses, contracts will be extended from 12 years to 20 years. In doing so, the government plans to increase the number of households using solar power from the existing 240,000 to 700,000 by 2020, and supply solar power to 3,400 schools from the existing one thousand.