The term energy cooperative refers to cooperative or non-profit societies that are committed to setting up a renewable energy production facility in a collaborative manner and that wish to take advantage of the specific feed-in tariffs for these energy cooperatives.
It is recommended to contact Klima-Agence or existing cooperatives to learn from their experience.
It is possible to set up a cooperative with as few as two people. However, to be eligible for the guaranteed feed-in tariff, an energy cooperative of this kind must be composed of at least 7 private individuals, foundations or non-profit associations. The same applies to the creation of a civil company.
Together, we draw up a joint concept to define the administrative, financial and technical framework conditions for the energy cooperative. If we don't have the necessary know-how, we can call on third-party consultancy services.
We can also decide at this point what activities the energy cooperative will undertake: do we want to limit ourselves to operating a photovoltaic installation, or do we want to consider other cooperative projects, such as the creation of an energy community that allows, for example, the electricity produced to be shared among the members of a community (link to the procedures.
Once the energy cooperative has been set up, we can get to work.
We identify a suitable rooftop or contact owners who have already agreed to support our energy cooperative (e.g. our local authority).
- If possible, we check that the roof structure is statically sufficient.
- We contact the grid operator
- We find out about the attractive feed-in tariffs for the electricity we can feed back into the grid
We can also simulate our project using the solar cadastre, to get an idea of the scale and electricity production of our future installation.
We need to sign a roofing contract invite bids for the planned installation and define the project's financing. The committee votes on the quotes and awards the contract to the craftsman.
If the voted budget is insufficient, new members can be recruited to provide the funding.
The work is completed when the electricity meter is accepted and installed by the relevant network operator.
Finally, the contracts with the grid operator and the supplier are signed by the president representing the cooperative.
Like any association or company, an energy co-operative requires technical, financial and administrative management (managing members, drawing up annual accounts, general meeting, etc.).
Is there a need to install another cooperative photovoltaic system? Go back to step 3 and repeat all the ensuing steps!
For the creation of or participation in a cooperative, Klima-Agence provides model statutes for the creation of a cooperative or civil company, as well as a comparative table of these two legal forms and a model contract for the rental of roofs. Klima-Agence also provides information on the technical basics of a photovoltaic installation and the most frequently asked questions about energy cooperatives and civil companies for the production of electricity.