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HOTLINE: Spain taxes the sun. Seriously...
August 02, 2013 - 11:15 GMT
This is not a joke. Well, Hotline doesn’t think it is, and it spent much of the last week trying to make sure. But no, apparently this is real: Spain is taxing the sun.
Secretary of state for energy, Alberto Nadal, signed a draft
royal decree levying consumption taxes on those who want to
have solar power systems on their rooftops, local media
reported on July 21.
The tax is high enough to ensure that it will be cheaper to
keep buying energy from current providers than to try and
generate clean power off the grid.
And the penalty for not paying up for the privilege of
collecting sunlight for your own use? A fine of up to €30
million ($39.8 million). That's €30 million, in case you
missed it the first time.
"Committing the sacrilege of being energy independent can be
very expensive," said Spanish newspaper El Pais,
via Google translate.
"The sun is now only for the privileged few and the power
companies, in which directors are former presidents and former
It is a huge blow to all suppliers to the nation's solar power
industry - from polysilicon producers supplying the solar cell
manufacturers to downstream aluminium producers that provide
the frames - and a stark turnaround from the government's
policy of support for clean energy to one of massive penalties
for anyone trying not to pollute so much.
Spain's ministry of industry, energy and tourism could be
reached for neither comment nor CT scan.
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