There is growing frustration among solar PV suppliers over delays in granting applications under the Solar Capital Investment Scheme.

The scheme was opened to applications earlier this year and can provide up to 60% grant aid towards the cost of solar panels for farmers.

However, despite the Department receiving over 700 applications in the first tranche, no farmers have yet been approved. Solar applications are set to be the first to be approved, as announced by the Department earlier this month.

However, suppliers of solar PV equipment who were present at this year's National Ploughing Championships expressed concerns that continued delays may result in panels not being installed this year.

As energy prices continue to fall, this will extend the payback period for those solar systems.

Grid connection

The slow pace of grid connections for larger solar PV systems was also criticised by suppliers.

Larger systems will have to apply to the ESB for an NC7 grid connection, which is taking up to 12 months to process and costs around €1,000.