The number of electric power generators from the sun in Americana more than doubled between 2019 and 2020. There was an increase from 235 to 487 in the period.
From one year to the next, the annual number of solar panel installations for generating electricity in homes, businesses and industries grew by 81% in the city. In 2019, 139 generators were installed. In 2020, there were 252 installations in the municipality.
In total, with data from 2021, 495 structures operate in Americana that produce their own energy through distributed photovoltaic generation (GD) in the city. The data are from Aneel (National Electric Energy Agency). The term “distributed generation” is given to electricity generated at or near the place of consumption.
Among the municipalities of RPT (Pólo Têxtil Region), Americana is the first city in the regional classification of installed power in solar energy, with an accumulated total of 4.9 megawatts of power.
Only in 2020, more kilowatts (kW) in installed photovoltaic power were introduced in Americana than what was added in the city in the years between 2015 and 2019 combined.
Biologist Thiago Pietrobon, who is the director of an environmental advisory firm in Americana, says that despite the slowdown caused by the pandemic of the new coronavirus (Covid-19), the growth of solar energy in Americana is above the national average.
“There is a price factor. Costs have dropped over the years, although they have stabilized more recently. There is also a technological issue, since solar panels have become more efficient, ”he said.
Pietrobon also explained the economic advantages of this energy source. As an example, he mentions ways of financing the installation price that leave the portion that the consumer will pay per month very close to the value of the traditional electric bill.
“These systems have been producing energy for about 25 years, so it is possible to say that this is the cheapest source of energy in Brazil today, if you divide the amount invested [na instalação] and how much he [o sistema] will return you in energy production over all these years ”, explained the director.
In addition, according to Thiago Pietrobon, RPT is one of the regions with the best potential for solar radiation in the state of São Paulo, with better rates, even, than those seen in coastal cities. Solar irradiation is a certain amount of solar radiation per unit area.
Evaldo Sangali, owner of a photovoltaic energy company in Jardim São Manoel, in Americana, said that after the beginning of the relaxation of quarantine measures, starting in August, there was a considerable increase in demand.
“Before the pandemic, the average was two projects per month, during a pandemic we don’t sell anything and now we are selling two systems a week, from larger systems for businesses, such as bakeries and supermarkets, to residential systems. I have nothing to complain about ”, he said.
The finding is the same as that of Vinicio Papa, owner of a company in the sector located in Vila Lourecilda. “Sales skyrocketed ‘after the pandemic’, mainly due to pent-up demand, reflecting the months stopped, but it is already returning to normal levels,” he said.
Luis Fernando, an engineer at a company in Nova Odessa, said that although there was a fall from the sales levels registered in 2019, in the fourth quarter of 2020 demand started to increase again.
“Here we receive at least five budget requests per day. However, the rate of orders ending in the closing of the deal is still small. We do about six installations per month, which is still very little in view of the sector’s potential ”, he explains.
Despite the favorable prospects for the sector, one of those interviewed by LIBERAL, who works autonomously in the city’s photovoltaic sector and did not want to be identified, companies still consider this investment to be very expensive.
“ The entrepreneur’s view, especially of the city of Americana, is very restricted to the final value of the project with the idea that ‘it is expensive’. However, if we make this amount in installments, the consumer will exchange the value of the energy bill for the cost of financing the system ”, he concluded.
In Brazil, according to a survey carried out by Absolar (Brazilian Association and Solar Photovoltaic Energy) in 2020, Uberlândia, in Minas Gerais, was the leading city in the placement of the municipal ranking of distributed generation, with 48 MW.
According to the association, since 2012, the photovoltaic solar sector has brought to the state of São Paulo 816.2 MW of installed capacity in solar energy, which added more than R $ 3.5 billion in new investments and generated around 24 thousand jobs.
Also according to Absolar, throughout the country, the use of solar energy corresponds to 1.7% of the national energy matrix, with only residential solar energy being responsible for 72.6% of the amount produced by this type of renewable energy.