PRESS RELEASE: Solar thermal given boost in STA policy win

Today the Government has published further details on the £2 billion Green Homes Grant scheme, which is due to go live at the end of September. [1] In a win for the industry, solar thermal will be included in the list of technologies eligible for homeowners to invest in, providing support for installers during challenging times and contributing towards a green economic recovery. STA Policy Manager Cam Witten said: “This is a welcome announcement and a strong endorsement of the important role solar thermal has to play in the decarbonisation of heating. The technology can help households save hundreds of …

PRESS RELEASE: STA welcomes two new board members

The STA has strengthened its board with the addition of Liz MacFarlane, Director at distribution company Segen, and Jerry Stokes, Executive Chair of innovative developers GRIDSERVE, at an important time for the industry. [1] STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Liz and Jerry are fantastic additions to the STA board. bringing a wealth of experience in addition to a deep understanding of their respective markets. We are proud to have individuals of their calibre and expertise contributing to the organisation as we begin to enter a new era for the UK industry. Founded fifteen years ago, Segen is the UK’s …

PRESS RELEASE: Solar industry welcomes decision to relax planning laws for large-scale battery storage

The Government has announced it will relax planning legislation to make it easier to construct large batteries to store renewable energy, in a move which will see ministers introduce secondary legislation to remove electricity storage, except pumped hydro, from the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIP) regime in England and Wales. [1] STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “We welcome the decision to make it easier to deploy flexible large-scale energy storage technologies in the UK, which will help to further decarbonise and improve the resilience of our energy system.” “The next steps in unlocking the potential of energy storage, and maximising …

PRESS RELEASE: New research reveals smart homes can flatten peak demand

Incisive new research undertaken by Loughborough University in partnership with the Solar Trade Association and Advance Further Energy reveals significant positive impacts of smart energy technologies in the home, including carbon reductions, energy bill savings, and improved system resilience. [1] Chris Hewett, Chief Executive of the STA said: “We now have an opportunity to make our homes active contributors of the flexibility needed to maximise the potential of renewables, rather than simply passive consumers of electricity. The evidence is here – deploying smart energy technologies across the country not only cuts carbon and helps households save on their energy bills, but …

PRESS RELEASE: Solar industry responds to CCC progress report

Today the Committee on Climate Change has published its new progress report. [1] This year, the report includes new advice to the UK Government on securing a green and resilient recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic. Responding, STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “We welcome the Committee’s recognition of the valuable contribution that onshore renewables can make to a green recovery; driving decarbonisation, deploying high quality jobs, and delivering significant economic growth.” “The Committee rightly points out that other forms of generation are more carbon intensive and expensive too. If we are to emerge from this crisis with a renewed economy …

PRESS RELEASE: STA calls for Government to commit to 2030 solar target to drive green recovery

The STA is calling for the Government to commit to a target of 40GW of solar capacity by 2030, in a letter to Alok Sharma, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, [1] and has published a new policy paper which outlines how this can be achieved, and contribute to the green recovery. [2] STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Now is the time for the Government to commit to action. A 40 gigawatt target aligns with the recommendations of Britain’s top climate advisors, and the industry is ready to scale up operations to deliver this, with the …

PRESS RELEASE: STA welcomes milestone for UK solar

Alok Sharma, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has taken the decision to approve planning permission for Cleve Hill Solar Park, which is set to be the largest solar park ever constructed in the UK. [1] STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Today the Government has shown that it recognises the vital contribution solar can make to Britain’s energy mix. This is a major milestone on the road towards a UK powered by clean, affordable renewables.” “Solar has a significant role to play in boosting the economy in the wake of the coronavirus crisis. With the right …

PRESS RELEASE: Solar industry welcomes CCC key principles for economic recovery post-COVID-19

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has set out six key principles for resilient economic recovery following the COVID-19 crisis, in which reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting to climate change is essential. [1] Welcoming the intervention, STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “It is vital that the Government’s recovery package aligns with its obligation to tackle climate change and deliver a resilient, net zero economy.” The first CCC principle calls on the Government to “use climate investments to support economic recovery and jobs,” and highlights that “many are labour-intensive, spread across the UK and ready to roll out as …

PRESS RELEASE: Record solar outputs help UK to reach longest coal-free period since pre-industrial times

Maximised levels of solar generation have ensured the delivery of a new coal-free record period for the grid. Coal power plants have been offline since 00:00 on Friday 10 April 2020, [1] and since then the UK has seen more than 1 terawatt hour of solar power put on the grid in that period [2] – enough to boil water for over 25 billion cups of tea or drive 6.7 billion kilometres in a Nissan Leaf. [3] STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Solar is playing a critical role in delivering a fossil-free grid and cleaner, cheaper power to Britain. …

PRESS RELEASE: UK solar peak generation record broken amid fall in pollution levels

Clear skies and cool temperatures have helped UK solar to break the all-time peak generation record. Around 12:30 on Monday 20 April 2020, a peak of 9.68GW was recorded by Sheffield Solar live PV generation tracker, [1] surpassing the previous record of 9.55GW set on 14 May 2019. [2] At the time of the peak, solar was meeting almost 30% of UK electricity demand. STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Ideal weather conditions and lower levels of pollution than normal mean solar is providing record levels of cheap, clean power to the grid. At a time when most of us …