« I am Stéphane GILLI, President of the CAP SUD Group. Since September 2006 my company is specialized in the management and maintenance of photovoltaic power plant.
With my experience, I propose you to present my version of the winding and sometimes scabrous world of energy transition and solar photovoltaic. You will understand little by little all the stakes of the great upheaval which is coming and who are and will be the real winners of the great green wave.
Without concession and without wooden tongue, a new episode of this chronicle will appear each month. I invite you to react and to comment on my broadcasts.»
Episode 1: ‘Responsible but not guilty’
France has 3 heavy-duty energy companies: EDF, ENGIE and TOTAL. Lobbying orchestrated by these three powerful groups has long contributed to slowing down and stigmatizing the development of renewable energies.
For French consumers, the tariff for access to electricity is abnormally inexpensive compared to its European neighbors.
This does not facilitate the installation of autonomous energy production systems because they are longer to make profitable in France than elsewhere.
The development of renewable energies requires the assent of economic reality. The greatest support for protecting the planet and our resources is that a virtuous market breaks away and develops. The very definition of sustainable development is based on three essential axes: economic efficiency, social equity and environmental quality.
France has completely missed its entry into the energy transition. The stables of Augias would not be large enough to contain all the absurdities and all the aberrations of the State in the matter.
But before we get to the heart of the matter, let us remember that the generous 2006 purchase price made it possible to launch large-scale photovoltaics in France.
The idea of the government at that time was to strongly support the purchase price of electricity from renewable sources in order to promote its development rapidly.Victima of its success the photovoltaic machine raged, the government in its panic Piled up layers and layers of new technical and tariff rules until the explosion of the model and the retroactive moratorium of December 2010.
But the evil was done and it was deep.
The excessive purchase price and the promises of high profits had enabled many opportunists to claim « professionnel photovoltaïque ».Facilities of bad quality, see dangerous had been installed.
Banks already chilly lost all confidence in this nascent industry. Many installers, suppliers, distributors, were locked out. Several hundred megawatts developed never saw the day and many companies sank with deposits already paid by their customers.
More than 45,000 jobs were destroyed and for public opinion, solar photovoltaics was associated with « instability », « lightness » and sometimes « scams ».
Most political leaders of the time fleeing their responsibilities (responsible but not guilty style) accused the companies of having created a speculative bubble around the purchase price.
An entrepreneur who sees a business opportunity and who does not seize it, is not an entrepreneur, or a poor entrepreneur. A company must earn money honestly and direct us, have only evolved with the rules dictated by the state and in accordance with the texts and decrees of laws.
So what do we reproach? To have made good profits?
Yes for a few years our companies made beautiful margins. A large part was redistributed: Rents, buildings, cash and obviously taxes. Should he then let EDF and Total all rafler?
But the most comical was yet to come, the post moratorium also reserved its pretty lot of surprises …