FAQ

What are Inbar Solar Energy’s advantages compared with other companies?

Inbar installs and maintains hundreds of solar systems with total installed size of dozens of mega-watts, the first of which have been in operation for over 4 years. These days the company is in the process of constructing medium size rooftop projects of a capacity of 15 megawatts. Adding to Inbar’s experience are the several municipal tenders it had won for the construction of solar energy systems on the rooftops of schools and public buildings in Jerusalem, Ashdod, Haifa, Sderot, and Be’er Tuvya, and hundreds more commercial systems which were constructed during previous PV Feed-In-Tariff programs.

The company is approved by all banks in Israel. Thanks to its good reputation with the banks Inbar has the ability to help receive financing for the construction of solar energy generation systems. From its inception Inbar Solar Energy provided a complete Turn-Key EPC solution, which includes project licensing and development and a bankable EPC and O&M agreements. Inbar’s established business relations with various equipment suppliers and banks help it accurately manage projects.

Inbar’s EPC (Engineering, Procurement, Construction) contract includes securities, performance warranty, and remedies to guarantee the solar system’s performances. The EPC contract guarantees the system will be constructed on time, on budget, and with the promised performances. The comprehensive maintenance contract ensures the system’s performances in generating solar energy along the system’s life.

What Types of Solar Energy Systems are constructed by Inbar?

Inbar Solar Energy specializes in the engineering, construction, and maintenance of solar energy systems of a capacity starting from 50 kilowatts (commercial solar system), including medium size systems (starting from 50 kilowatts and up to 5 megawatts), as well as large systems (more than 5 megawatts), on rooftops and on the ground. In addition to solar systems design and installation, Inbar offers a variety of options for maintenance and service of photovoltaic systems: monitoring only, basic operation and maintenance, and expanded operation and maintenance, which include washing the solar system.

In addition, Inbar carries out advanced performance analysis of operational solar systems which are connected to the power grid. This analysis is carried out for an investor who wishes to buy an operational solar system or for a system’s owner who wishes to know whether or not its performances coincide with those expected from the system.
Inbar does not construct residential solar systems (smaller than 15 KW).

What are the differences between installing a Solar Energy System under the NetMetering vs. the Feed-in-Tariff program?

A simpler registration process – compared with previous regulations which were for energy production, this regulation is for self-consumption. Previous Programs required attaining a production license with all it entails (proof of economic ability, comprehensive statutory examination, and compliance with stringent prerequisites), Netmetering is a self-consumption regulation which only requires a minimized construction permit and an appropriate size grid connection. This is the first program which does not involve government subsidy.

Determining system size – in the Netmetering program the maximum system size is determined based on electricity consumption, unlike previous programs where the IEC undertook to procure all electricity produced. The program includes mechanisms for the sale of the excess production to another consumer, but they are not financially advisable and are only good to minimize losses in cases where all of the electricity produced cannot be consumed.

The leasing model no longer exists – with previous programs the owner would lease a roof, and pay rent from the project’s revenues, generated from the sale of the electricity produced. This program does not have revenues from the sale of electricity and therefore the leasing model does not exist.

Project finance – with Netmetering program it is difficult to receive project-finance under the same terms as before, because there is no revenue flow. “Revenues” depend on consumption. In fact, there is no positive revenues flow, only a decrease of the negative flow of the electrical bill. For this reason the banks cannot mortgage the project’s revenues as security for system project-finance.
Connecting to the power grid – with Netmetering, as in a domestic or commercial system, the grid connection is made through the consumer’s main Electric Cabinet, while a medium system requires a new connection to the power grid. Connecting to an existing Electric Cabinet significantly reduces connection costs compared with a medium size system.

What are the business opportunities in NetMetering regulation for generating Solar Energy?

The Netmetering regularization for generating solar energy is designed for consumers who wish to reduce electricity costs by self-generating electricity, and who have available rooftop surfaces to build a solar system on. The regulation enables setting electricity prices for 25 years in advance and guarantees green and cheap electricity, which is untouched by fluctuations in electricity cost. The regulation provides a solution for excess production of electricity (such as on weekends and holidays) using a mechanism which credits the excess production. The credit for production of excess electricity is a monetary credit, which allows one to enjoy both worlds: decrease peak time consumption while receiving high credit for production during these hours.

The increase in electricity prices along with the decrease in solar energy systems’ prices provides a high return on the investment when building the system. The savings on electricity expenses will result in a return for the cost of the system in less than 10 years, after which the consumer will enjoy free electricity for approximately 15 additional years. In financial terms, the average annual return will be between 10 – 12%, which is a very high return for an investment in infrastructure with no project-finance.