Solar thermal (C) Rayotec

Solar thermal – the forgotten older brother?

This is an article by Chris Roberts, the Solar Trade Association’s Technical Specialist and Managing Director of Poweri Services Ltd, which was written for and published in Solar Business Focus UK. For many years heating water using the power of the Sun was the most popular of all small-scale renewable energy technologies. I’ve been involved in this industry since the turn of the century and at that time it was estimated that there might have been in excess of 100,000 working systems in the UK. We didn’t know the numbers with any certainty, as there was no established means for collecting accurate …

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New build solar in Kent (C) Eco2Solar

New build solar: Build a home, build a solar home

by Paul Hutchens, Chairman of the Solar Trade Association New Build Working Group and Managing Director of Eco2Solar Article published in Planning and Building Control Today, a digital quarterly production covering all aspects of planning, regeneration, construction and building control issues. You can view the magazine here. Solar is a cheap and easy way of making the new homes and offices we build more sustainable, cheaper to run and compliant with ever more stringent building regulations. The cost of solar panels has fallen 80% since 2010 – solar is now cheaper than ever. Back in 2010 it might have cost you …

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Solar airplane shows power of sunshine electricity

A solar powered plane, Solar Impulse II, took off from Abu Dhabi this morning on the first leg of its round the world flight. Paul Barwell, CEO of the Solar Trade Association, commented: “This shows the power of solar technology: simple, clean and becoming ever more efficient.” “We are seeing solar racing cars, solar speed boats… soon the touchscreens on our mobile phones could have in built solar in them.” “Solar Impulse 2 is also a trailblazer for the combination of solar and battery storage – the onboard battery allows the plane to charge up during the day and keep …

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The Path to Zero Subsidy (part 2)

Our CEO Paul recently wrote a two-part guest blog in Solar Power Portal outlining the STA’s Path to Zero Subsidy. The second part focussed on “How do we get there?”, examining rates of return in a zero subsidy world and considering key cost reduction drivers that will enable the industry to operate without feed in tariffs. The blog was published in the February 2015 edition Solar Business Focus and is due to be published on Solar Power Portal soon.

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Innovating with investment opportunities in local solar farms

by Leonie Greene, STA The Solar Trade Association has amended its influential 10 Commitments on solar farms. We now expect best practice to include offering investment or shared ownership opportunities to local communities. As an industry trade body this means we are backing up DECC’s efforts to share the financial benefits of solar farms to communities. But where we have disagreed with DECC is on the narrow framing of ‘community energy’. There is a very wide range of community actors beyond legally constituted Registered Societies that need to be clearly recognised in the community energy agenda. Local authorities are case …

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The Path to Zero Subsidy (part 1)

Our CEO Paul recently wrote a two-part guest blog in Solar Power Portal and Solar Business Focus outlining the STA’s Path to Zero Subsidy. The first part describes the reasons why a path is needed as well as the detail of the STA’s plan. The blog was published in the December edition of Solar Business Focus and on Solar Power Portal: The Path to Zero Subsidy (part 1)

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