Solar power plant operators do it every single day, most notably around noon time: They consume the electricity their plants generate. The result: self-consumption. The reason: physics. These facts didn’t change, the only new thing is that self-consumption is both favored and promoted by lawmakers.
Whereas in the past compensation for feeding-in solar energy has been completely detached from the energy consumption, the coordination of consumption and generation is now becoming increasingly important, especially following the German Bundestag's amendments to the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) in early May. Through a combination of reduced monetary compensation, payable sales tax and saved power purchasing costs, operators should end up receiving up to 9.5 cents more for each kilowatt hour of solar energy they consume instead of feeding it to the public grid (depending on the amount of self-consumption and with an assumed electricity price of 23,8 cents incl. VAT).
Self-consumption is consequently becoming a key issue when discussing the profitability of solar power plants. The big questions are therefore: How much self-consumption can an average home achieve under normal circumstances, i.e., without taking any additional measures? And what solutions are capable of increasing the amount of self-consumption?