Also for small businesses and individual consumers photovoltaics can represent an economic advantage. When producing electricity on their own roofs , the possibity of cost advantages compared to electricity purchases from the grid appear and make the usage of photovoltaic meaningful.
A few years ago, the electricity production had enjoyed a monopoly almost exclusively in the hands of corporations , who were also operators of transmission networks. Electricity was almost exclusively produced by large scale central power plants .
Today, 15-20% of the electricity is produced locally from renewable sources in a number of European countries. Solar energy contributes significantly in addition to wind energy.