The Ministry of Mines and Energy has unveiled new principles aimed at enhancing the utilisation of solar energy on rooftops. These measures seek to address existing challenges and promote clearer, more transparent, equitable, accountable and efficient use of solar power, both technically and economically.

At a recent forum titled “Principles for Permitting the Use of Solar Energy on Roofs in Cambodia,” minister Suy Sem highlighted the need to revise regulations due to the increased adoption of rooftop solar power.

After consulting with the UN Development Programme (UNDP), new policies have been established to regulate the use of solar energy on roofs.

Sem acknowledged that previous regulations presented several challenges for both managers and consumers. These challenges included the inability to accurately measure electricity generated by rooftop solar panels, the absence of guidelines for permitting solar energy use on rooftops and unclear provisions for solar installation services. Consumers were deceived in terms of technology, quality and cost as a result.

He revealed that the ministry, in collaboration with UNDP, studied neighbouring countries’ practices and concluded that Cambodia should adopt the quota option to facilitate the development of solar energy.

This approach involves defining management principles, determining the roles and responsibilities of relevant ministries and institutions, and establishing clear coordination mechanisms. These measures have been officially announced and will be implemented at present.

During the forum, UNDP resident representative to Cambodia Alissar Chaker emphasised the vision behind the principles for permitting solar energy use on rooftops. The aim is to enhance the management and usage of solar energy on roofs in Cambodia by ensuring clarity, efficiency, transparency, equality, accountability and equity.

The ministry and UNDP have made the collaborative effort to establish principles for permitting solar energy use on rooftops in Cambodia.

Under this policy, the ministry will grant permission for the installation of solar energy on the roofs of consumers, provided it does not affect the national grid’s supply. Consumers who wish to fulfil environmental and climate change obligations can share in the development of solar energy as defined in the master plan through a quota system.

This approach would enable the government to fulfil its commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the Paris Agreement, as outlined in the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) report for the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change implementation.