- Kurt Deman
Lommel has the highest solar panel capacity per inhabitant. The West Flemish municipalities of Ardooie and Lo-Reninge take second and third place. The greatest potential capacity on ideal roof parts is located in larger cities such as Antwerp, Ghent and Bruges. This is evident from the energy map of the Flemish Energy and Climate Agency.
The energy map provides an overview of the installed solar panel capacity on September 30, 2023. It bundles both industrial and private installations. The fact that Lommel tops the list with 3,645 watts per inhabitant is largely due to the Kristal Solar Park, which was the largest of its kind in the Benelux when it was put into use in 2019. The second on the list, Ardooie (2,446 watts), has a large solar panel park thanks to frozen vegetable producer Ardo.
Flemish Brabant is lagging behind
Seven other West Flemish municipalities appear in the top ten, including Lo-Reninge, Wielsbeke, Veurne, Staden, Hooglede, Langemark-Poelkapelle and Alveringem. Yet Limburg appears to be top of the class when it comes to wealth per inhabitant. Flemish Brabant occupies the last place in Flanders. The largest growth in 2022, expressed in additional power per inhabitant, was in Genk (+373 watts per inhabitant), followed by Nazareth (+322 watts) and Herstappe (+301 watts).
Domestic installations: Herstappe leader, Drogenbos last
If we zoom in only on the power of household installations, less than or equal to 10 kW, Herstappe (999.37 watts per inhabitant) tops the list for Lo-Reninge and Zuienkerke. The lowest power per inhabitant for residential installations is found in Drogenbos (89.90 watts). The fastest growers in 2022 were Herstappe (+301.27 watts), Damme (+143.05 watts) and Lubbeek (+138, 72 watts).
Third place within EU
The greatest potential capacity on ideal roof parts is mainly located in the provincial capitals, with Antwerp, Ghent and Bruges as the top three. Within the EU, Belgium occupies third place with an average power of 559 watts per inhabitant. Only the Netherlands (1,072 watts per inhabitant) and Germany (810 watts per inhabitant) score better. Flanders significantly increases the national average with 750 watts per inhabitant. Latvia, Ireland and Croatia are the furthest behind.
End of year rush
Since the government premium and the favorable VAT rate for young homes will no longer apply to new installations from January 1, the end-of-year rush for solar panels has already started for a while. The cards may be reshuffled in the last quarter of 2023. You can check how profitable solar panels are at current energy prices via the energy comparison site Mijnenergie.be.
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