Swissolar delivers ‘Solar Wars’ petition to Swiss government

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A petition with thousands of signatures calling for the protection of solar energy support in upcoming policy reforms has been delivered to the Swiss Federal councillor Doris Leuthard.

The ‘Pro Solar’ petition gathered more than 1,500 signatures over the weekend alone.

The petition was part of the Solar Wars campaign which uses references to the film series Star Wars to engage the public. The campaign included imposing Leuthard wielding a lightsaber onto a film poster distributed at the Locarno Film Festival. .

The petition calls for rapid expansion of solar generation under the energy strategy, and urges the Swiss government not to delay the national 20% renewable generation target until 2050, as it will propose in its 2050 energy strategy in the next few days. The tabled changes to energy policy also include up to 40% cuts in solar subsidies.

In a statement from Solar Wars – which is led mainly by Swissolar, the national solar association of Switzerland – the campaign claims that lobbying for oil, gas and nuclear is undermining opportunities for solar in the new energy strategy. The campaign also claims that energy users will lose money in the future without more renewables incentives that can help relieve energy dependency on international sources.

Spokeswoman for Swissolar Martina Rychen told PV Tech: “Pro solar stands for secure, independent and clean energy with the focus on solar energy. Nuclear power should not be replaced by gas power stations but rather by renewable energies with solar energy at the forefront. With the Pro Solar campaigns we aim to activate and mobilise as many people as possible to help us stand up for more solar energy in Switzerland.”

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