A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

                    Developed for Greenpeace Canada

                                Prepared by Nitya C. Harris
A National Framework for Solar Hot Water
            Developed for Greenpeace Canada
                Prepared by Nitya C. Harris

               © copyright December 2006

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                                                                                                                      A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

Table of Contents

Foreword  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 3
Acknowledgements  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 4
Acronyms  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 5
Executive Summary .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 6
1. Introduction .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 8
2. Solar Hot Water: Background  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 9
      2.1 Why Solar Hot Water  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
      2.2 Solar Hot Water in the World . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  13

3. Solar Hot Water in Canada .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 14
      3.1 Current Situation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  14
      3.2 History of Solar Hot Water in Canada . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  15
      3.3 Barriers to Solar Hot Water . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  18

4. Vision for Solar Hot Water in Canada  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 20
      4.1 Markets for Solar Hot Water Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
      4.2 Technical Potential  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
      4.3 Targets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
      4.4 Vision . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

5. How to reach the Vision  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 24
      5.1 Key Issues for Sustainable Market Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
      5.2 Actions at the National level . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

6 Next Steps .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 34
References .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 35
A. SWOT Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
B. How do Solar Hot Water Systems Work? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  41
C. Solar Potential calculations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42
D. Existing Renewable Energy Capacity 2004 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
E. Lessons Learnt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
F. Solar Hot Water Industry in Canada . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                   A National Framework for Solar Hot Water


Let the Sunshine in – on a Million Solar Roofs
Solar hot water has clear benefits for Canadians. By using free solar energy, you will reduce your
energy costs. You will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The burning of fossil fuels is rapidly
driving our planet into an unprecedented climate change crisis. Rising temperatures, rising sea
levels, melting ice, and extreme weather events are just some of the most obvious impacts.

Solar hot water can provide a large percentage of residential water and space heating, typically
reducing annual energy costs 40 to 60 percent. Water and space heating account for about 80
percent of residential energy use.

So why is Canada an international laggard in solar hot water? Austria, with a similar climate and a
population of only 8 million, has about 110 times more solar hot water than Canada. The answer is
obvious. While solar hot water is a cost-effective, mature, and sustainable technology, it has not had
consistent meaningful support from federal and provincial governments.

Solar hot water can reduce energy costs for the average Canadian, and protect the environment.
Federal and provincial politicians must work together to create significant incentive programs and
achieve these benefits. Greenpeace proposes a long-term national vision – the Million Solar Roof
Program. Regional programs aiming at 100,000 or more installations are achievable in the short-

It’s time to let the sunshine in – on a Million Solar Roofs.

David H. Martin
Energy Coordinator, Greenpeace Canada
Greenpeace Canada

    A National Framework for Solar Hot Water


    We thank the following individuals for providing
    information and/or reviewing parts of this study:
    Yossi Cadan, Campaigns Director,
    Greenpeace Canada
    David Martin, Energy Coordinator,
    Greenpeace Canada
    Teun Bokhoven, Conergy Europe
    Werner Weiss, AEE INTEC, Austria
    Jeff Knapp, Renewable Energy Deployment
    Initiative, NRCan
    Clifford Maynes, Executive Director, Green
    Communities Canada
    Doug McClenahan, CanMet, NRCan
    Rob McMonagle, Executive Director, Canadian Solar
    Industries Association
    Joyce McLean, Director, Strategic Issues, Toronto
    Hydro Corporation
    Mary Pickering, Associate Director, Toronto
    Atmospheric Fund
    Melinda Zytaurk, General Manager, Ontario
    Sustainable Energy Association
    Guy Dauncey, President, B.C. Sustainable Energy
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

List of Acronyms

ACCC     Association of Canadian Community Colleges
BCSEA    B.C. Sustainable Energy Association
CANMET Energy Technology Centre (NRCan)
CANREA   Canadian Renewable Energy Association
CanSIA   Canadian Solar Industries Association
CSA      Canadian Standards Association
DHW      Domestic Hot Water
DSHW     Domestic Solar Hot Water
ESTIF    European Solar Thermal Industry Federation
FCM      Federation of Canadian Municipalities
GJ       Gigajoule—Unit of energy equal to 1,000 million joules or 950,000 BTUs.
HRSDC    Human Resources and Social Development Canada
I/C/I    Institutional, Commercial , Industrial sector
ICLEI    International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives
IEA      International Energy Association
MW       Mega Watts (1 million watts)
NGO      Non-governmental organization
NRCan    Natural Resources Canada
OSEA     Ontario Sustainable Energy Association
PASEM    Program for Assistance for Solar Energy Manufacturers
PUSH     Purchase and Use of Solar Heating Program
PV       Photovoltaics
REDI     Renewable Energy Deployment Initiative (NRCan)
SEDP     Solar Energy Demonstration Program
SESCI    Solar Energy Society of Canada Inc.
SHW      Solar Hot Water
Greenpeace Canada

    A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

           Executive Summary
           Worldwide, solar energy is playing an              It is ascertained that large-scale use of solar
           increasingly important role in reduction of        hot water systems in Canada will address a
           fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions       number of anticipated concerns and potential
           while fostering local economic development.        opportunities for Canadians including the
           Solar hot water (SHW) applications are one of      following:
           the least expensive ways to generate heat in       • reduction of greenhouse gas emissions
           residential and commercial uses. Markets for
           solar hot water and space heating are increasing   • reduction of other external costs casued b
           around the world at impressive rates of about        fossil fuels and nuclear power
           26% per year. Though solar hot water has grown     • security and diversity of energy supply
           dramatically throughout the world, this has not    • replacement of conventional non-renewable
           happened in Canada. The International Energy         energies with renewable energy
           Association ranked Canada as 31st out of 41
           countries for cumulative installed capacity of     • de-centralized power owned by Canadians
           glazed SHW systems at the end of 2004. This        • reduction of greenhouse gas emissions
           report examines the barriers to the installation   • reduction of other external costs caused by
           of solar hot water systems in Canada and will        fossil fuels and nuclear power
           address the questions:
                                                              • creation of local jobs
           1. W
               hy has solar hot water not flourished in
              Canada as a renewable energy solution for       • development of domestic and export markets
              water and space heating?                          for solar expertise and equipment

           2. W
               hat are the strategic initiatives that need   However, there are still many barriers to the
              to be put in place nationally to facilitate     development of solar hot water programs in
              the development and success of solar hot        Canada. They include:
              water programs in communities throughout
                                                              • lack of public awareness of the technology
                                                              • lack of solar awareness in architects,
                                                                engineers, builders, and in the real estate,
                                                                tourism, banking, and commercial sectors
                                                              • lack of qualified and motivated installers
                                                              • quality assurance for solar systems
                                                              • high up front costs for SHW systems
                                                              • lack of incentives for homeowners and builders
                                                              • lack of political will and governmental support.
Greenpeace Canada
                                                              A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

Austria’s successful solar hot water program           National Actions Required
is a good model for Canada to follow. Based
on Austria’s market development, the target            1.   Commit to a “Million Solar Roofs” program
proposed for Canada is 1 million SHW systems                for Canada.
by 2025, with 2.5 million square metres of             2. Support the Million Solar Roof Program.
commercial collector area.                                Forms of support could include:
                                                          • direct financial support for purchase &
European experience suggests that there are
three critical components that form the basis
                                                          • federal tax credits; establisment of a low-
for sustainable SHW market development and
                                                          or no-interest loan program
growth. They are:
                                                          • a Standard Offer Contract syserm for SHW.
1. Public awareness
                                                       3. Support a Solar Cities Program.
2. Strong market infrastructure
                                                       4. Implement a national awareness campaign to
3. Incentives and regulatory support.
                                                          inform people of the advantages of using solar
The implementation of any of these components             energy.
by itself leads to a strong potential of failure       5. Sponsor training of architects, engineers,
of the program. Therefore, it is important that           utilities, developers and real estate agents.
all three components be addressed congruently
and at national, regional and local levels. Overall    6. Implement demonstration projects to raise the
stable, constant framework conditions prove               profile of the technology.
effective for market development.                      7. Provide funding for a “Solar in Schools”
A number of key initiatives that need to be
in place for a strong solar program in Canada          8. Establish national standards for systems that
have been discussed in this report. In the                are harmonized with United States and Europe.
course of implementing the actions towards a           9. Include SHW criteria in the National and
comprehensive solar program, it is important to           Provincial plumbing codes.
involve actors at provincial, regional, local and
the utility level. In this report, only the national   10. Establish national standards for installers.
actions have been selected and summarized in           11. Subsidize training programs for plumbers and
the table below.                                           heating contractors.

                                                       12. Develop programs with utilities.

                                                       13. Initiate a Canada-wide solar system monitoring
                                                           program to create a reliable data resource.

                                                       14. Establish a solidly funded long-term solar
                                                           program in NRCan.
Greenpeace Canada

    A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

           1. Introduction                                               grown ten times faster than the overall economy
                                                                         over the past five years, and the annual yield
           Solar water heaters convert sunlight into heat                (energy produced) for solar thermal collectors
           that is transferred by liquid to where it is used             in 2004 was 58,117 GWh, equivalent to 9.3
           or stored. Solar collectors are mounted in sunny              billion litres of oil.2 As shown below in Figure
           locations and contain a heat transfer fluid,                  1, the produced energy from solar thermal is
           usually water or glycol-based fluids. The heated              second only to wind in comparison with other
           fluid is pumped from the collectors to a heat                 renewable energy technologies in the world
           exchanger which transfers the solar heat to                   while its installed capacity is greater than other
           either the building’s hot water or space heating              renewables.
                                                                         Worldwide, the capture and use of solar energy
           SHW is a mature, economic and sustainable                     is playing an important role in local economic
           technology that can improve energy efficiency                 development while reducing CO2 emissions. Solar
           while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The                  hot water (SHW) applications are one of the least
           global installed capacity of solar thermal systems            expensive ways to generate heat in residential
           by the end of 2004 was 98,416 MW of thermal                   and commercial uses. It can typically provide
           energy.1 The world’s solar thermal sector has                 40–50% of residential hot water heating and 15%

                     Figure 1: Cumulative capacity and annual energy generated 2005 (IEA 2006)

             See: International Energy Agency Solar Heating & Cooling Program, Solar Heat Worldwide: Markets & Contributions to the
           Energy Supply 2004. This global capacity includes 40,299 MW-th of evacuated tube water collectors, 34,184 MW-th of glazed
           water and 23,117 MW-th of unglazed water collectors, as well as 641 MW-th of unglazed air and 175 _MW-th of glazed air
             The statistics are based on data collected from 41 countries, representing 57% of the world’s population and 90% of the
           solar thermal market. Source: IEA, 2006
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                              A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

of commercial hot water heating requirements at              2. Solar Hot Water Background
a cost below the current price of electric water
                                                             2.1 Why Solar Hot Water?
heating in many provinces. Solar hot water
panels are a cost-effective way to harvest the               SHW systems provide energy security with
sun’s energy. Instead of solar panels that make              minimal environmental impacts. Advantages
electricity, these solar panels collect the sun’s            include avoided transmission losses as the
heat. The heat from the collectors is then used              energy is locally produced and the flexibility
to heat the hot water, or pumped through water               of the technology — systems can be easily
lines embedded in the floor or through panels                retrofitted to existing buildings or built into new
mounted to the wall. Solar hot water systems                 buildings. And, SHW systems are competitive
can be used in homes, commercial enterprises                 with conventional systems in many parts of
such as restaurants, car washes, and hotels, in              Canada.3
hospitals and for swimming pools.
                                                             Furthermore, they contribute to community
Though SHW has grown dramatically throughout                 economic development and a sustainable
the world, this has not happened in Canada. This             economy through the building of a domestic
report will examine the barriers SHW in Canada               industry. This renewable energy technology
and will address the questions:                              directly addresses the reduction of energy and
1. Why has solar hot water not flourished in                 greenhouse gases from the two largest energy
   Canada as a renewable energy solution for                 uses for households.
   water and space heating?
                                                             The establishment of large-scale use of solar
2. What are the strategic initiatives that need
                                                             hot water systems in Canada will address a
  to be put in place nationally to facilitate
                                                             number of anticipated concerns and potential
  the development and success of solar hot
                                                             opportunities for Canadians including the
  water programs in communities throughout
                                                             • Security and diversity of energy supply
Many communities across Canada have shown                    • Replacement of conventional non-renewable
interest in accelerating the installation of                   energies with renewable energy
solar hot water systems in their buildings.
It is very difficult for each community to                   • De-centralized power owned by Canadians
expend the energy necessary to develop solar                 • Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions
infrastructure such as tax incentives, system                • Reduction of other external costs caused by
quality control criteria, installer qualification              fossil fuels and nuclear power
criteria, and regulations. These infrastructure
measures need to be established nationally to                • Creation of local jobs
help these communities move forward with their               • Export of solar expertise and equipment
solar programs. Therefore, some key measures
need to be in place nationally to help these
communities develop initiatives that will foster
the development of solar communities.

  On an energy basis, the cost of solar thermal energy ranges between four to seven cents per kWh over the system’s 20
year life expectancy (DSF, 2004)
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            2.1.1                                                2.1.2
            Security and Diversity of Energy Supply              Replacement of Conventional Energy
            As increasing population and urbanization            Domestic water heating is the second largest
            continue to exert unprecedented strain on            energy end-use for Canadian households,
            utilities in all the provinces, it is desirable to   exceeded only by space heating, and as shown
            establish a diversity of energy sources for the      in Figure 2, accounts for approximately 24
            future. SHW has the potential to be widely           percent of total household energy consumption
            used in homes and businesses across Canada           (NRCan, 2006b).
            and can therefore reduce the need for outside
            energy sources. Since these systems also have        Together, water heating and space heating
            the ability to contribute to the reduction of peak   account for approximately 81% of the energy
            loads during the day, they can be a factor in        use in a home which in 2004 constituted 1159
            advancing utility load management goals and in       PJ (Table 1). As can be seen from Table 2, 95%
            enhancing the longevity of fossil fuels. A study     of this energy usage is from electricity and
            done by the David Suzuki Foundation (DSF, 2004)      natural gas. Installation of an SHW system can
            indicates that while an average house in Ontario     contribute a sizable portion of the energy used
            used 116 GJ of outside energy annually in 2001       towards both domestic hot water and space
            – this figure could be reduced to less than 50       heating for a home that is presently utilizing
            GJ when solar energy usage is maximized and          electricity or natural gas.
            integrated with energy efficiency measures.

            Upon installation of a solar hot water system, the
                                                                 Table 1: Residential and Commercial/
            solar portion of the energy costs for the home       Institutional Energy Use (NRCan, 2006b)
            will not vary over the life of the system. The
            solar hot water system thus provides inflation-                         Residential
            proof energy security in the face of increasing                       Energy Use (PJ)
            fossil energy prices in the future.                                  2004 (12,375,000
                                                                                 households, 1545    Comm/Instit
                                                                      End-use       million m2)     Energy Use (PJ)
                                                                      heating            348              42
                                                                      heating            811             N/A

                                                                 Table 2: Energy Source for Domestic
                                                                 Water Heating in Canada 4

                                                                          Electricity                37%
                                                                         Natural Gas                 58%

                                                                     From NRCan, 2006b
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                             A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

In Residential and Commercial sectors, total                Table 3: Residential Water Heating
energy demand is expected to increase at about              GHG Emissions by Energy Type
1 percent per year for the residential sector,
                                                                                                        % of total GHG
and at 2.4 percent per year for the commercial                                                          emissions for
sector (NRCan, 2006c) even with the inclusion                                    GHG Emissions          water heating in
of intensity improvements in these sectors.                          Energy Type (Mt of CO2e) 2004      residential sector
This sizable demand for energy for domestic                            Electricity           8.03               41.8%
hot water heating can be augmented by SHW
systems. Space heating can also be provided by                       Natural Gas             10.12              52.7%
SHW in new construction.
                                                                     Heating Oil             0.97               5.1%
2.1.3                                                                      Other             0.05               0.3%
De-centralized Power Owned by Canadians
                                                                           Wood              0.02                0.1%
The absence of transmission and distribution
losses is another advantage of such a de-                                   Total            19.20              100%
centralized energy source. In the wake of
concerns of energy being controlled by trans-
national corporations or by hostile nations, the            Table 4: GHG Emissions from space heating
locally produced energy from solar hot water                by Energy Type: Single Detached Houses
systems has the added attribute of being owned
by Canadians.                                                                          2004 GHG          % of total GHG
                                                                                     Emissions (Mt of    emissions for
2.1.4                                                        Energy Type                  CO2e)          space heating

Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions                        Electricity             5.80                18.7%

There is now worldwide agreement between                     Natural Gas             17.36               56.1%
scientists that the burning of fossil fuels such as coal,
oil and natural gas is the cause of climate change.          Heating Oil             5.53                17.9%
In 2004, approximately 25% of total Canadian
residential greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions was               Other                   0.51                1.6%
attributed to domestic water heating, an estimated                                   1.77                5.7%
increase of 14% since 1990 (NRCan, 2006a). Table
3 below shows the breakdown of GHG emissions                 Total                   30.97               100%
from residential water heating by energy type.
The installation of a solar hot water system can
eliminate between 1 to 2 tonnes per home per year           Table 5: GHG Emissions for Water and Space
based on energy usage.                                      Heating

In the space heating sector, single detached                                           Residential         Comm/Instit
houses contribute 75% of the GHG emissions                                            GHG Emissions       GHG Emissions
of all emissions due to space heating in the                             End-use          (Mt)                (Mt)
residential sector. The following table shows the                Water heating                19                  3
breakdown by energy type for GHG emissions
                                                                 Space heating                41                 N/A
for space heating in single detached homes.
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

              The federal government ratified the Kyoto               2.1.5 Reduction of Other External Costs
            Protocol in 2002, which commits Canada to                 Caused by Fossil Fuels and Nuclear
            reduce its GHG emissions by 6 percent per
            year (from 1990 levels). Canada’s 2002 climate            In looking at the comparative costs of different
            change plan committed the country to cut                  energy sources, it is important to identify the
            greenhouse gas emissions by 240 million tonnes            total cost of the energy including the public
            a year by the end of 2012. As space heating               health and environmental costs. This is a difficult
            and water heating contribute 79% of total GHG             task and is open to many interpretations. One
            emissions from a home (NRCan 2006a), there is             such comparison has been formulated by
            considerable potential to reduce GHG emissions            Professor Bainbridge (Fig. 3). Although there
            by integrating solar hot water into space heating         is considerable discussion about the exact
            and water heating in buildings. The installation          costs of each energy source, the relative costs
            of a solar hot water system alone can eliminate           deserve to be examined. This figure shows that
            between 1 to 2 tonnes of CO2 per home per year            solar hot water is the leader in this realm, most
            based on energy usage.                                    probably due to the simplicity of the technology
                                                                      and the resulting low environmental and social
                                                                      impacts. Further research is required to quantify
                                                                      the external costs of energy sources. This is an
                                                                      essential step to ensure more accurate price
                                                                      comparisons between distributed generation
                                                                      options such as SHW, and fossil fuel and nuclear-
                                                                      generated energy.

                         Source: Bainbridge,5 D.A. 2004. The price falls short. Solar Today 18(5):62,59

              David Bainbridge is an Associate Professor of Sustainable Management, Marshall Goldsmith School of Management,
            Alliant International University, San Diego, California
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                            A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

2.1.6 Creation of Local Jobs                                  for hot water and space heating, 28% for heating
                                                              swimming pools, and 2% for drying agricultural
The solar hot water industry is ideal to produce              products and space heating. All solar thermal
jobs at the local and national levels as most of              systems installed by the end of 2004 generated
the jobs relate to marketing, distribution, design            the equivalent of 58,117 GWh (209,220 TJ), which
and installation of the systems. The Canadian                 corresponds to an oil equivalent of 9.3 billion
Solar Industries Association estimates that 6                 litres, and helped to avoid the annual emission
jobs can be created per 1,000 m2 of solar hot                 of 25.4 million tonnes of CO2. Compared with
water collectors installed without the inclusion              wind, geothermal and photovoltaic energy, solar
of maintenance personnel.6 The solar thermal                  heating’s contribution meeting global energy
sector in Europe employs over 20,000 people                   demand is second only to wind power and much
and is a 2 billion Euro business.7                            bigger than photovoltaics’ contribution. This
                                                              fact is often underestimated ( IEA, 2006).
2.1.7 Export of Solar Expertise and
Equipment                                                     The world’s largest market for solar hot water
                                                              collectors is China, with over 60 percent of
An ambitious target for solar hot water                       the global installed capacity in 2005. China’s
systems in Canada will develop a promising                    national goal is 300 million square meters of
market opportunity to create new business                     solar hot water systems by 2020 (REN21,2006).
opportunities for this resource in our country,               Although there are no explicit policies for
and export opportunities for solar expertise                  promoting solar hot water in multi-storey urban
and solar systems to other parts of the world                 buildings, building design and construction by
including the United States.                                  developers has begun to incorporate solar hot
2.2 Solar hot water in the world                              water as energy costs rise and public demand
                                                              increases, particularly during the current
Markets for solar hot water and space heating                 construction boom. There are also government
are increasing around the world at impressive                 programs for technology standards, building
rates of about 26% per year. Existing solar hot               codes, and testing and certification centers to
water collectors have the fourth highest capacity             help the industry mature.
(2004) in renewable energy production after
large hydro, small hydro and biomass. Forty                   Germany is the leading solar thermal market
million households out of a total 1600 million                in Europe and in 2005 installed about 950,000
households worldwide have solar hot water                     m2 (665 MWth) in 2005 (Estif 2006). These
(DSF, 2004).                                                  systems are currently promoted by the German
                                                              government through a market incentive program
The development of solar hot water programs                   that provides a subsidy dependent on collector
in many countries has been driven by the                      surface area. However, the German government
awareness of potential world markets and export               and industry are collaborating to replace this
opportunities by federal and regional levels of               program with a new law that would provide
government. At the end of 2004, a total of 164                a payment for every equivalent kWh of heat
million square metres (m2) of solar thermal                   generated by renewable energies (this system
collectors were installed in 41 IEA member                    is inspired by the REM currently in place for PV
countries, with about 71% of collectors in use                electricity generation) (DSF, 2004).

    From DSF, 2004
    From: www.estif.org Solar Thermal markets in Europe June 2006
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            In Europe, the Renewable Energy Council called        must be 100% solar. Buildings undergoing
            for a European Union Directive to support             major refurbishment are also subject to the
            ‘renewable heating’ including solar and, in           ordinance. The size category means typically
            February 2006, the European Parliament                that all commercial buildings, and all residential
            directed the EC to develop a directive to promote     buildings of 16 or more households, are subject
            Green Heat. Half the energy on that continent         to the ordinance. Due to the ordinance, the
            is consumed for space heating, and politicians        solar thermal capacity per capita has increased
            want the share of Green Heat to double by             twenty fold from 1.1 m2/1000 inhabitants to
            2020.8                                                22.4 m2/1000 inhabitants. (ASIT, 2006) Over
                                                                  60 Councils have followed Barcelona’s lead and
            Beyond China and Germany, at least 17 countries,      by March 2006, over 8 million Spanish citizens
            and probably several more, provide capital            were subject to this ordinance (ASIT, 2006).
            grants, rebates, or investment tax credits for
            solar hot water/heating investments, including        In 2006, the new Technical building code was
            Australia, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Finland,         adopted by the Spanish government requiring
            France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Japan, the          that at least 30 to 70% of the domestic hot water
            Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain,            demand be covered by solar or other renewable
            Sweden, the United Kingdom, many U.S. states,         energy forms. Portugal has also adopted a
            and the U.S. federal government. Capital grants       framework law with a similar content, though
            are typically 20–40 percent of system cost.           the technical parameters must still be specified
            Investment tax credits may allow deduction of all     (ESTIF, 2006).
            or part of the investment cost from tax liability.
            Italy’s renewable energy certificates also apply
            to solar hot water, so-called “white certificates.”   3. SOLAR HOT WATER IN CANADA
            Since 1980, most buildings in Israel have been        3.1 Current Situation
            required to have solar hot water collectors. The
            technical requirements vary by size and type of       The International Energy Association report (IEA,
            building. Certain industrial, medical, and high-      2006) ranked Canada as 31st out of 41 countries
            rise buildings are exempt.                            for cumulative installed capacity of glazed SHW
                                                                  systems at the end of 2004. Figure 4 indicates
            A number of major cities around the world             the cumulative collector area installed in Canada
            have enacted ordinances requiring solar hot           to the end of 2004 from this report.
            water in new buildings or providing incentives
            or subsidies for solar hot water investment.          As can be seen from these figures, the bulk
            Examples are Barcelona (Spain), Oxford (UK), and      of the systems installed in Canada are with
            Portland, Oregon (USA). Barcelona in particular       unglazed collectors. Approximately 97% of all
            has enacted one of the most far-reaching of           liquid unglazed collectors are sold into the
            such policies. Starting in 2000, the Barcelona        residential sector for swimming pool heating.9
            Solar Thermal Ordinance has represented a             A survey conducted by NRCan indicated that
            major milestone in urban energy policy. The           sales of glazed and evacuated tube collectors
            ordinance requires all new buildings above a          (between 2002 and 2004) were split between the
            specific size category provide at least 60 percent    residential and I/C/I sectors, with approximately
            of their domestic hot water energy demand from        67% in the residential sector. The residential
            solar thermal collectors. Swimming pool heating       sector sales were primarily for domestic water

                From: CANREA, 2006
                 NRCan, 2005
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                                A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

heating, although in 2004, 23% of sales in the
residential sector were for combination domestic
hot water and space heating applications,
indicating strong growth in this application.
Sales of these collectors into the I/C/I sector
were primarily for hot water applications.

3.2 History of Solar Hot Water
in Canada

The question of whether Canada has enough                      Table 6: Mean Insolation values for
solar energy to make a significant impact on our               Canada
energy needs often arises in the discussion of
solar energy projects in Canada. An evaluation10                                         Mean Daily Insolation
of the mean daily insulation for Canada’s                                                  for latitude tilt
provinces and territories performed by NRCan                                      Region       (kW/m2)
provides the information in the table below.                                      Alberta               4.73
These numbers are comparable to insolation
                                                                         Saskatchewan                   4.99
values between 2.4 and 4.4 kWh/m2/day11 for
Austria and Germany—two of the leading solar                                     Quebec                 4.33
energy producers in Europe. The efforts of                                       Ontario                4.22
Austria and Germany are proven models that
                                                                               Manitoba                 4.55
political will can produce a successful solar
program in areas that have average values of                                         P.E.I.             4.06
solar radiation.                                                        Newfoundland/
CanSIA has also produced a graph (figure 5) 12

that compares the solar radiation in Miami and                              Nova Scotia                 3.92
Toronto. The figure indicates that except for the                       New Brunswick                   4.19
winter months, both locations have comparable                          British Columbia                 3.80
amounts of radiation in spite of the considerable
difference in their latitudes.13                                              Territories               3.67

Solar energy programs have had a chaotic history
in Canada. Increasing oil prices in the late 1970s
and early 1980s resulted in the emergence of                   become established. Another such program
a number of federal solar hot water programs.                  was the “Purchase and Use of Solar Heating”
One of these was the “Program for Assistance                   (PUSH) Program –a program aimed to incent
for Solar Energy Manufacturers” (PASEM),                       government departments to purchase solar
that provided grants to solar companies to                     products. However it was soon realized that

   Pelland, S., Poissant, Y. “An Evaluation of the Potential of Building Integrated Photovoltaics in Canada.” 2006, NRCan,
Canmet Energy Technology Centre
   Source: CanSIA presentation: Toronto as a Solar City. May 2006. http://www.cansia.ca/downloads/report2006/P-16.pdf
   Latitudes: Toronto: 43°40′ Miami: 25°46′
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            the government represented only a small part                    schedule of decreasing contributions was also
            of the potential market. So, the PUSH program                   established in relation to these targets. Figure 6
            was closed in 1983 and the solar program was                    shows the historical sales in Canada for solar
            focused on the private sector.                                  thermal collectors provided through a recently
                                                                            completed survey14 of solar hot water collector
            In 1983, the Solar Energy Demonstration Program                 sales.15 The figure clearly shows increasing
            (SEDP) was approved. Contributions were made                    solar collector sales due to the SEDP program.
            available to solar installations that qualified                 The SEDP was seen to have had a significant
            under one of three approved sub-programs:                       impact on improving the market penetration
            1) the Solar Domestic Hot Water sub-program                     rate of solar energy systems in the Canadian
                                                                            market. (SEDP, 1987). However, the time frame
            2) the Commercial/Industrial sub-program
                                                                            for the SEDP program was too short to allow
            3) the Special Projects sub-program.                            more development of the solar sector. A longer-
                                                                            term program with gradual subsidy decline was
            The program was scheduled to run for five                       needed for more sustainable results.16 With
            years and energy performance targets were                       the fall of oil prices, the various government
            established for each year. A corresponding                      deployment programs for solar thermal systems

               Final Report Survey of Active Solar Thermal Collectors, Industry and Markets in Canada, 2005 http://www2.nrcan.gc.ca/
               The compilation of data included information from previous surveys and reports and estimation of sales for periods (1987
            to 1994) where there were no records available.
               Conversation with Doug McClenahan, CanMet, August 15,2006
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                   A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

ended in the period of 1986-1987 (the last           solar thermal projects in Canada, including
program was for solar DHW systems which ended        many of the larger installations of various
in March 1987). Between 1986 and 1988 the solar      collector types. A number of interruptions in
industry experienced a collapse of sales.            this program have reduced its effectiveness.
                                                     Recently, the level of interest in the program
It is interesting to note that the SEDP evaluation   has risen dramatically.
report points out “Further costs and technology
improvements alone, are not likely to be             To address the largest solar hot water market
sufficient, without continued program subsidies,     in Canada, REDI has allowed a number of pilot
to reduce the payback period of future solar         domestic solar hot water projects to develop over
installations to the point where solar could         the years. These projects have given increased
attract a sizable market share (SEDP, 1987).         exposure to solar domestic hot water with the
                                                     installation of a limited number of systems.
Commencing in 1998, the Renewable Energy             The pilot projects have taken place in Ontario
Deployment Initiative (REDI), a program of Natural   in Toronto, Peterborough, Kingston, and Perth,
Resources Canada (primarily for commercial           and in Courtenay, B.C., Bathurst NB., and on a
systems), has provided funding to dozens of          province-wide basis in B.C.
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            3.3 Barriers to Solar Hot Water                      However, a program is presently not available
            development                                          for inexperienced installers. There is also a need
                                                                 to involve roofers and the heating industry in
            A. Awareness & Promotion                             the installer-training program.
            1. Existing Homes
                                                                 4. Motivation of Installers
            One of the major barriers to the development
            of solar hot water systems in Canada is the          Besides being qualified, installers need to be
            lack of public awareness about the technology.       motivated to promote solar in their communities.
            Most Canadians are not aware of the difference       Installers need to offer solar in an active manner
            between photovoltaics and solar hot water            rather than as an alternative energy source.
            systems. The Ipsos-Reid Poll (2002) done on          Active marketing of SHW needs to be part of
            behalf of NRCan indicates that approximately         installer training.
            1% of Canadians are aware of solar hot water.
            Besides homeowners, there is a need to inform        5. Quality of Solar Systems
            the tourism, sports and recreation sectors, health   A major challenge for the industry is to ensure
            care, banking and commercial sectors of the          that the credibility of the systems is maintained.
            solar hot water products available, their features   Systems with inferior quality levels may be sold
            and numerous benefits. Market research has           and often it is not easy for the customer to find
            not been done to determine the messaging that        good information on the quality of the products
            resonates with Canadians regarding solar. There      on the market. A certification program for
            is also low media interest in this technology,       packaged solar domestic hot water systems was
            which accentuates the problem.                       introduced in 2004 based on CSA standards.
                                                                 At present, Canada does not have any CSA
            2. New Build Sector                                  certified systems although a number of systems
            In the new build sector, there is very little        are awaiting certification. The CSA process
            awareness of solar hot water amongst engineers       is slow and can be cost prohibitive to smaller
            and architects. This results in a lack of            manufacturers. Furthermore, there is presently
            integration of solar systems into the architecture   no harmonization with European or American
            of the buildings. This lack of awareness also        certification for solar systems.
            applies to builders, developers and building
            associations who need to be educated about           C. Incentives and Regulations
            this technology.
                                                                 6. Up front Costs of Purchase of
            B. Market Infrastructure                             System
            3. Lack of Qualified Installers                      Unlike other energy sources such as natural
            Due to the small scale of this industry in           gas and electricity, harnessing the energy from
            Canada, there is a lack of qualified installers of   solar presents an up front cost that is usually
            solar hot water systems. A number of installers      prohibitive to the user. A number of states in the
            who were active in the field in the 1980s            U.S. (in conjunction with financial institutions)
            have gone on to other businesses during the          offer low-interest loans to alleviate this concern.
            decline of solar in the 1990s. The Canadian          This is presently not available to Canadians.
            Solar Industries Association presently offers a
            certification program for experienced installers.
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                                 A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

7. Availability of Incentives                                   D. Political Will
Initiatives in Europe have succeeded due to                     10. Lack of Political Will and Interest
a consistent set of incentives provided to                      Japan and Germany are two countries with
homeowners and businesses. Such incentives                      relatively modest solar resources but have
are not available today to Canadian homeowners.                 nevertheless quickly become world leaders
It should be noted that many of the incentives                  in solar photovoltaic (PV) technology. The
identified for solar systems would not be needed                experience of these leaders clearly illustrate that
if the environmental and public health costs of                 strong solar markets can be quickly established
conventional energy sources were included in                    if supportive policy measures are implemented
their price or if the current subsidies to the fossil           that focus on reducing the risk for investors in
fuel and nuclear sectors were phased out.17                     the technology and business through the use
                                                                of long-term adequate price guarantees, strong
Commercial systems can obtain a rebate (until                   government R&D, and active market penetration.
the end of 2006) from the REDI program.                         In Canada, at present, there is little interest in
However, the stop and go nature of the REDI                     solar energy at the national level.
incentives has been a barrier to commercial
solar development.                                              11. Unstable Policies
                                                                Unstable policies and incentives can seriously
8. Incentive for Builders of New Homes
                                                                damage the production and sales cycle and
The real estate market does not recognize any                   undermine consumer confidence. In countries
added value to a home that has an installed                     with successful solar programs, long-term
solar system. Therefore, builders do not see the                policies provide a signal to the market and
value of installing solar systems on new homes                  encourage the solid growth of the solar industry.
as they perceive the savings to benefit only the                Stop and go incentives and solar programs in
buyer. The absence of regulations that specify                  Canada have been major barriers for the solar
energy usage limits for building components                     industry.
such as water heating or space heating systems
                                                                12. Importance of Bringing
also prevent builders from installing solar hot
water systems in new homes.                                     Municipalities on Board
                                                                Municipalities can play a key role in the
9. Incentive for Owners of Commercial                           implementation of solar programs as they are
Systems                                                         large end users of energy. There is a need to
The owners of commercial buildings are usually                  develop ways to engage municipalities and to
not the energy consumers and so there is little                 stimulate the interest of municipal staff and
incentive for these parties to install energy                   politicians.
saving equipment on their buildings as the
energy bills are passed on to the tenants.

   Canadian government funding has averaged $1.4 billion per year to the fossil fuel industry, and $332 million per year to
the nuclear industry over the last few decades (CanSIA, 2004)
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            4. VISION FOR SOLAR HOT                                          4.2 Technical Potential of Solar
            WATER IN CANADA                                                  Hot Water in Canada in 2004
            4.1 Markets for Solar Hot Water
                                                                             Using the energy consumption from 2004
            Systems                                                          (Table 7) and assuming that all households
                                                                             would install solar hot water for water and
            Table 7 below indicates the energy usage18
                                                                             for space heating. (In Austria in 2006, 50% of
            in residential and commercial buildings for
                                                                             installed collector array is for combi systems
            water heating and space heating in 2004. The
                                                                             that include water and space heating).
            commercial buildings considered were the prime
            candidates for solar water heating including                     If 100% of the roofs could accommodate solar:
            educational services buildings, health care                      Total Water and Space Heating energy that could
            buildings and accommodation and food services                    be provided by solar hot water = 1201PJ X 0.5 solar
            buildings. Space heating for these commercial                    fraction = 117PJ = 32.5 million MWh per year
            buildings is not considered to be viable at this                 If 40% of the roofs could accommodate solar:
            time as it would be a difficult task to retrofit                 46.8 PJ =13 million MWh per year
            these buildings to accommodate space heating
                                                                             The technical potential can also be arrived at by
            from solar systems.
                                                                             looking at the solar installed capacity in other
            This table clearly shows that the major market                   countries. Figure 7 provides a comparison of the
            for solar hot water systems is the residential                   cumulative installed capacity of solar hot water
            sector in Canada. Although the commercial/                       collectors on a per capita basis for countries
            institutional market is smaller by comparison, it                that have similar climates to Canada. This figure
            is still substantial enough to be included in an                 indicates that Canadian capacity needs to
            Action Plan.                                                     multiply hundredfold to meet the levels of solar
                                                                             hot water in Austria in 2004.

              Source: http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/corporate/statistics/neud/dpa/trends_res_ca.cf, http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/corporate/statistics/
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                                   A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

Table 7: Energy Use and GHG Emissions for residential and commercial buildings

                             Residential Energy Use              Residential GHG              Comm/Instit Energy
                End-use            (PJ) 200419                    Emissions (Mt)                  Use (PJ)
         Water heating                   348                             19                              42
         Space heating                   811                             41                             N/A
                    Total                1159                            60

4.3 Targets for Solar Hot Water                                  Table 8: Solar Hot Water targets for Canada
                                                                 based on other country installations
in Canada
                                                                                    Cumulative Cumulative                      Cumulative
A conservative estimate given from NRCan in the
                                                                                     installed    solar                      Installations by
Renewable Energy in Canada Status Report 2002
                                                                   Possible Targets    area      energy                           sector
indicates “There are approximately 12,000 solar
water heaters currently in Canada, representing                         10X Canadian                                        86,600 residential
less than one percent of the solar hot water                           installations in     775,880                           systems plus
                                                                                                            543 MWth
market.”21                                                            2004 (similar to        m2                               256,000 m2
                                                                       Sweden 2004)                                              comm.20
Figure 822 (next page) compares solar collector
                                                                       20X Canadian                                                 173,200
sales between Austria and Canada. It is
                                                                      installations in                                             residential
interesting to note that sales in Canada were                                               1,551,760         1,086
                                                                        2004 (similar                                            systems plus
higher than those in Austria during the 1980s                                                  m2             MWth
                                                                       to Slovenia &                                              512,000 m2
while the Canadian solar program was in place.
                                                                   Switzerland 2004)                                                 comm.
Austria’s program continued, resulting in today’s
leadership position while the termination of                                                                                        346,400
                                                                        40X Canadian
Canada’s solar program resulted in the collapse                                                                                    residential
                                                                       installations in    3,103,520          2,172
of the solar market. The importance of federal                                                                                   systems plus
                                                                      2004 (similar to        m2              MWth
commitment to solar is clearly indicated by this                                                                                 1,024,000 m2
                                                                      Germany 2004)
picture. The example of Austria’s solar market                                                                                       comm.
demonstrates the ability to achieve targets                                                                                         866,000
with the establishment of consistent and strong                        100X Canadian
federal involvement.                                                   installations in    7,758,800          54,300
                                                                                                                                 systems plus
                                                                      2004 (similar to        m2              MWth
                                                                                                                                 2,560,000 m2
                                                                        Austria 2004)

   Source: http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/corporate/statistics/neud/dpa/trends_res_ca.cf, http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/corporate/statistics/
neud/dpa/tablestrends2/com_ca_32_e_1.cfm?attr=0 ; This energy use is for 12,375,000 households, 1545 million m2.
   An assumption of 67% residential and 33% commercial is made for these calculations as per the latest ratios in the NRCan
solar collector sales survey.
   From Natural Resources Canada Website:http://www2.nrcan.gc.ca/es/oerd/english/view.asp?x=700&mid=38
   CanSIA, Solar in Canada 2006: The Turning Point. August 2006.
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            Targets                                           Residential
            Based on the graph above, the collector           1 million solar hot water systems in Canada by
            sales achieved by Austria is a good target if     2025
            similar policies are put into place for market    Energy Saved: 3,000,000 MWh per year
            development. From Table 8, a target to match      GHG Reduction: 1 to 2 million tonnes per year
            Austria would be 866,000 residential systems      Sales: $5 billion
            plus 2,560,000 m2 of commercial collectors.
            The above figure indicates that this growth in    2.5 million m2 of commercial collector area
            Austria has primarily occurred between 1989       Energy Saved: 1,500,000 MWh per year
            and 2004, over a period of 15 years. Although     GHG Reduction: 0.5 million tonnes per year
            energy costs in Canada are much lower than in     Sales: $1.5 billion
            Austria, it can be assumed that such a target
            could be accomplished in a similar time line as
            the systems have matured and the Canadian
            industry and government can learn from
            European programs. With these assumptions
            the following target is proposed for Canada:
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                                A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

4.4 Vision                                                    European Solar Thermal Vision 2030
Industry and research institutes from all                     Solar thermal systems will look very different in
around Europe have recently developed the                     the future. Solar thermal collectors will cover,
Solar Thermal Vision 2030, a document which                   together with photovoltaic modules, the entire
outlines the sector’s vision for the future use               south-oriented roof area of buildings. Roof
of solar thermal energy. For the building sector,             windows will be integrated. The storage tank
which is responsible for 40% of Europe’s energy               will be able to store the solar heat over weeks
supply, it presents the concept of the Active                 and months, but will not be too large. The solar
Solar Building, which will be entirely heated and             thermal energy system will provide domestic
cooled by solar thermal energy and which is                   hot water, room heating in winter and room
expected to be the building standard in 2030.                 cooling in summertime, thus greatly increasing
The overall vision of the solar thermal branch                the overall comfort of the building.24
is to supply up to 50% of the low-temperature
energy demand of Europe by solar thermal by

In a similar manner, it is imperative for Canada
to have a strong vision for the role of solar hot
water systems in its energy future. The following
is a starting point for such a vision.

We envision a future where solar hot water
• Become a significant energy provider
  for Canadian homes and businesses by
  becoming a mainstream energy technology;
• Create jobs in communities across Canada
  while becoming a source of export potential;
• Become a significant part of the solution to
  reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Canada;
• Empower citizens to make their own
  individual contribution to climate change;
• Help reduce demand on electricity grids.

   From the press release launching the European Solar Thermal Technology Platform. See: http://www.esttp.org/cms/upload/
   Solar Thermal Vision 2030 See: http://www.esttp.org/cms/upload/pdf/Solar_Thermal_Vision_2030_060530.pdf
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            5. HOW TO REACH THE VISION                                     Germany In the period from 1995 to 2001
            5.1 Key Issues for sustainable                                 the German solar thermal market showed good
                                                                           development. The demand for solar thermal
            SHW market development
                                                                           systems rose by an average of 30% per year.
            European experience25 suggests that there are                  There were three main reasons for this market
            three critical components that form the basis                  success. First the public awareness of solar
            for sustainable SHW market development and                     energy and therefore the interest in the use of
            growth. They are:                                              solar thermal increased. Second the government
                                                                           strengthened subsidies for solar thermal
            1. Public Awareness                                            systems. Third the solar branch of government
            2. Strong Market Infrastructure                                – with established solar companies and several
            3. Incentives and Regulations                                  new companies – worked very hard to build up
                                                                           the market and to activate plumbers to sell and
            The implementation of any of these components                  install solar systems (SIA2).
            by itself leads to a strong potential of failure
            of the program. Therefore, it is important that
            all three components be addressed congruently
            and at national, regional and local levels. Overall
            stable, constant framework conditions prove
            effective for market development.

                 Conversations with Teun Bokhoven, Zen International, March 2006
Greenpeace Canada
                                                                   A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

5.1.1 Public Awareness and Promotion                 Netherlands In 1996, the Dutch gov-
                                                     ernment presented its plans for the introduction
Raising awareness is the key to overcoming the
                                                     of renewable energy. For solar thermal, the
barrier to growth that is representative of the
                                                     target was set at 400,000 solar systems in 2010
lack of knowledge regarding this technology
                                                     and 1 million systems in 2020.
at all levels of society. Basic understanding of
solar hot water systems, their use and benefits
is needed. Most people do not appreciate             Public Campaigns
the difference between obtaining solar power         Information and promotional campaigns are
through photovoltaics and solar heat from            essential to stimulate market growth. Therefore,
solar thermal systems. This means that they          a mass public campaign is one key element of
will have to be informed with basic information      the solar hot water strategy. It should define the
and guided through the whole process of              benefits of solar in providing long-term security
understanding the technology before they can         of energy supply, the minimal environmental
be expected to invest in it. Information regarding   impact, and promote the “feel good” factor of
solar hot water systems need to be provided          solar. It is important that the image of solar
to consumers, installers, architects, engineers,     thermal be linked to quality and reliability.
builders, developers, real estate agents and         Commercial marketing and public awareness
policy makers.                                       campaigns should go hand in hand for optimum
                                                     effectiveness. In Austria, a public awareness
Targets                                              campaign was launched in 2000 to raise the
Targets are important to set as they can be a        image of solar technology and to make aware of
major driver in the development of the solar hot     its advantages. An important factor for success
water program. The European White Paper target       in Austria was the motivation of the general
is 100 million m2 installed by 201026 and many       public.
European countries have set national targets for
their solar hot water programs.                      The main goals of promotion campaigns can be:
                                                     • to create awareness of the potential for solar
A target such as a 1 million solar roofs program
                                                       in the region and the use of solar thermal;
is an effective promotional tool to raise interest
in the populace and to attract partnerships from     • to provide knowledge about financial and
utilities, provincial and municipal governments.       technical issues;
The national target can be broken down into          • to motivate potential users to assess the
provincial and territorial targets.                    potential for solar thermal in their building;
                                                     • to assist potential users by providing
                                                       independent information to facilitate their
                                                       decision to install a system; and
                                                     • to assist potential users to find reputable
                                                       installers and quality systems.

     from SolTherm report
Greenpeace Canada
     A National Framework for Solar Hot Water

            National level campaigns need to be carefully             recently established is the Solar Cities program
            designed to reach the targeted groups of                  in Australia.28 Solar Cities is a $75.3 million
            potential users whether they be a specific                initiative designed to demonstrate how solar
            market segment or a geographical area. Market             power, smart meters, energy efficiency and
            research that determines effective messaging for          new approaches to electricity can combine to
            SHW will be useful. In areas where solar thermal          provide a sustainable energy future in urban
            is not yet widely used, demonstration projects            locations in Australia. Four Solar City projects
            can be a very useful tool to support awareness            will be supported in this program.
            and promotion campaigns.
                                                                      Another example is the U.S. Solar Cities
            Germany In order to increase the public                   Strategic Partnership funding initiative in 2006.
            awareness, the solar thermal campaign‚ ‘Solar–            This is a funding opportunity that is seeking
            na klar!‘ (‘Solar – that’s clear!’) was launched in       to form strategic partnerships with U.S. cities
            1999. With a budget of 10 million DM (5,1 million         and with the U.S. Department of Energy. These
            Euro) over the 3 years, this campaign played              partnerships are intended to help accelerate the
            a key role in the successful rise of the solar            adoption of solar technology at the local level
            heating market in Germany.                                by engaging city governments, as important
                                                                      end users of energy, key intermediaries to
                                                                      other end users within their jurisdiction, and
            Solar Hot Spots                                           regulatory entities. This initiative requires that
            It has been observed in several countries                 the city express a commitment to a city-wide
            including Austria and the Netherlands,27 that             approach to integration of solar energy into city
            low-level promotion to large groups, especially           planning and processes, as well as to large-scale
            when no adequate follow-up is arranged, can               implementation of solar technologies between
            have disappointing effects in terms of direct             now and 2015.29
            sales increase, even if they may have had a
            longer-term effect on the general awareness.              Specific sectors of the commercial market can
            As the consumer becomes more aware of the                 also be targeted such as the tourism industry,
            technology and becomes enthusiastic about                 laundromats, restaurants or car washes. It is
            its implementation, a system that has follow-             easiest to start with one or two sectors. Multi-
            up with direct contact with installers and                family homes are more complicated as experienced
            distributors needs to be in place. Thus it may be         designers and installers are needed.
            better to focus on a smaller region / municipality
            and to have intensive communication with                  Partnerships
            an established infrastructure of installers               Partnerships with community energy and
            and dealers there, or to choose well-defined              environmental organizations that are active
            market segments, than to have a low level of              in education and community organizing can
            communication in a whole country or province.             be an effective method to deliver information
                                                                      and engage a target population. This has been
            The establishment of “solar hot spots” across the         exemplified through the success of the delivery
            country is one method of focusing promotion.              of the Energuide program through the Green
            A potential idea is to establish a Solar Cities           Communities Association and conservation
            program. One such program that has been                   programs through local non-government

               from Soltherm report
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