Archive for May, 2012

Weekly Solar PV Installations (21st-27th May 2012)

One week more, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) publishes some statistics of solar PV installations all over the UK in the last 7 days. The initial installation numbers given for the last week (21-27 May 2012) is 2,186 installations in this week compared to 1,980 for the week ending 20th May 2012. The total number of installations on the MCS is 322,829 today, up from 320,224 from the last week, and the total capacity installed increased by 5.5 MW, and is likely to stand at 1.10 GW next week (1.098GW now), as these results are still provisional1. (more…)

New 16p Feed-in Tariffs deadline extended until August 2012

Last week the Government announced their decision to postpone the new Feed-in Tariffs cut, confirming that the cuts to solar incentives will happen in August 2012, a month later than originally planned.

From 1st of August, the new Feed-in Tariffs will drop from 21p/kWh to 16p/kWh, and will continue going down every three months, depending on the market. On the contrary, the Export Tariff will be increased, going from 3.2p to 4.5p per kW hour.

The Government defends these cuts have to be done to reflect the lower costs of installing solar panels, and maintains that new FITs will give a return of the 6% for a typical solar panels installation. Climate Minister Greg Barker said  “the sector has been through a difficult time, adjusting to the reality of sharply falling costs, but the reforms we are introducing today provide a strong, sustainable foundation for growth for the solar sector”, providing the industry with ‘transparency, longevity and certainty.’

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Discover Solar introduces the Solar Installers Directory!

Discover Solar is proud to announce the launching of its new solar installers directory which includes all 4,678 MCS approved installers in the UK!

How it works

Our UK solar installers directory works as a database to all the visitors interested in installing solar panels, or simply looking for a local solar installer. By entering your postcode, the nearest solar installers to you will appear, as well as the different prices companies offer depending on the solar panels manufacturer and the size of the installation. (more…)

Solar Impulse, a sun-powered plane, heading to Africa

The experimental sun-powered Solar Impulse airplane departed from the Swiss airfield of Payerne last night piloted by Andre Borschberg, on its first attempted intercontinental flight from Switzerland to Morocco.

Solar Impulse is expected to land in Madrid before heading to Morocco without using any fuel. Once in Morocco, where it’s said the launch of construction on the largest ever solar thermal plant it’s likely to start coinciding with the end of the trip, Solar Impulse will be hosted by the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN), whose mission is to develop the Moroccan solar energy plan, to provide the country with a competitive industrial profile in the renewables sector.

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Weekly Solar PV Installations (14th-20th May 2012)

As every Wednesday, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has published the weekly statistics of solar PV installations all over the UK in the last 7 days. Although these results are still provisional1, the initial installation numbers for the week ending  20th May 2012 show 1,980 installations in that week compared to 1,496 for the week ending 13th May 2012. The total number of installations on the MCS is now 320,224 up from 317,996 (week ending 13th May 2012), and the total capacity installed increased  by 9MW, to stand at 1.09GW (week ending 13th May 2012). (more…)

The Green Deal, the way to energy efficient homes

The Green Deal is a new environmental policy included in the Energy Act 2011 and also in the the Climate Change Programme – launched in November 2000 -, the UK Government is going to introduce in October 2012 – although its conceded it will not get into full swing until 2013 -.

Around a 25% of the UK’s carbon emissions comes from the energy used in homes and a similar amount comes from businesses, industry and workplaces. The target of the Green Deal is to make those emissions to decrease by 2050. This innovative measure aims to reduce carbon emissions cost effectively by improving the energy efficiency of British properties, encouraging UK residents to consume less energy, and, as a consequence, waste less money.

The idea of the Green Deal is that improvements will be financed through loans attached to the energy bills of the improved properties. The loans would come with the promise that consumers would save money on their electricity bills, including repayments, so the costs of the loan repayments would be lower than the savings from the upgrades, but this will be a guideline and not legally enforceable guarantee. (more…)

Weekly Solar PV Installations (7th – 13th May 2012)

According to the new data published this morning by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), solar photovoltaic panels demand in the UK continues dramatically dropping. The number of solar pv installations for this week ending 13th May is 912, 42.5 % less than the last one 1.

Going back in time, the average of solar photovoltaic installations in May 2011 was 1,594. From the beginning of May 2012 until the date, the average of installations is 1,248, which is around a 20% less, when there is still more than fifteen days left until the end of May. In addition, recent figures show that the total capacity installed during the past four weeks was 17MW, against a four-weekly average of 71MW over the past 12 months. (more…)

Four trade associations united to defend UK Solar

In an attempt to give a boost to PV solar industry, The British Photovoltaic Association (BPVA), the Micropower Council (MPC), the Renewable Energy Association (REA) and the Solar Trade Association (STA) have this morning revealed their affiliation to fight against the feed in tariffs fiasco.

Solar PV, one of the best investments in the current days

Given the bad results solar photovoltaic installations have had since the new Feed-in Tariffs started, all four major trade associations representing domestic solar photovoltaics in the UK have decided to push the message that thanks to drastically falling component prices, solar PV seems to be one of the best investments in the current days. According to what they say, the reason for this decrease in the number of installations is likely to be public confusion. They defend that solar photovoltaic help consumers to make savings on their energy bills, to generate an income, and also to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and strengthens energy security. (more…)

Weekly Solar PV Installations (ending 6th May 2012)

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has once more published and updated solar photovoltaic installations for the week ending 6th May 2012. Solar panels demand in the UK continues to drop as we could see last weeks, and overall have dropped off a cliff since the new Feed-in Tariffs started, lending support to these who say this decision was taken too fast, damaging thousands of homeowners and businesses.

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Energy Performance Certificates at a glance

An Energy Performance Certification (EPC) is a legal requirement in  bought, sold or rented buildings in the UK.

Although there are some exceptions – places of worship, temporary buildings (less than 2 years of use ), standalone buildings with an area of less than 50m2 that aren’t used to provide living accommodation for a single person, industrial sites, workshops and non-residential agricultural buildings that don’t use too much energy, and holiday accommodations rented for less than 4 months or with a license to ocuppy -, Energy Performance Certificates are required for all the domestic and commercial buildings available to rent or sell in the UK. (more…)