At the Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Ljubljana, the 9th Slovenian Photovoltaic Conference took place today, providing the most up-to-date information on photovoltaics.
Photovoltaic energy is recognized as the energy of the future, as emphasized by the speakers, including Minister of Climate, Environment, and Energy, Mr. Bojan Kumer. The Minister highlighted that Slovenia needs to focus on generating as much energy as possible from renewable sources instead of relying on imports since we currently purchase over a quarter of our electrical energy from other countries. He expressed enthusiasm for the progress in photovoltaic solutions in Slovenia, which have a promising future. He also emphasized that Slovenia has handled the energy crisis better compared to some neighboring countries that had to implement strict measures due to energy shortages. This was achieved through a well-functioning energy system. The Minister addressed misconceptions about the harmfulness of photovoltaics and urged the professional community to present facts about the safety of solar panels’ usage to dispel fears and promote an effective green transition. He welcomed the exchange of experiences and expressed the belief that the next conference will report on the positive effects and achievements of today’s discussions.
Prof. Dr. Marko Topič presented interesting data showing that in 2021, Slovenia ranked in the lower half of European countries with around 170 watts (W) per capita from solar power plants. However, we made progress last year and surpassed 300 watts per capita. This year, we expect to exceed 400 watts of photovoltaic energy per capita, which is an excellent achievement. In 2021, 6,000 new solar power plants were built, and last year an additional 12,000 were added, resulting in solar power plants contributing to 6% of the electricity produced in 2022. It is expected that this number will further increase in the future. Progress in solar power plant construction is also observed in Europe. The role of SODO (Slovenian electricity distribution companies) was mentioned, as they monitor applications for self-sufficiency. Elektro Celje had the highest number of approvals for connected power plants, while Elektro Ljubljana had the highest number of connected power plants. Professor Topič expressed his joy that next year we will report on new achievements in photovoltaics and come closer to achieving photovoltaic gigawatt and multi-gigawatt photovoltaics on Slovenian soil to reach climate goals.
Matej Guštin presented the collaboration of the Student Energy Club in the AURORA project and the development of the eponymous mobile application. The application allows users to calculate their personal carbon footprint and provides recommendations for reducing it. His lecture titled “ŠEK and AURORA App – Towards Carbon-Neutral Citizens” is available at the following link.
Recordings of all lectures and presentations are available on the event’s website at http://slo-pv.fe.uni-lj.si/#program.
This article is also available in Slovenian at this link.