PRESS RELEASE: Solar tech’s central role in zero carbon buildings

The Solar Trade Association has welcomed The Committee on Climate Change’s new report on UK housing stock and its readiness for climate change. [1]. It is undeniable that the standard of homes (existing and new) must be significantly improved to achieve high energy efficiency and low carbon buildings.​ However, the Association is concerned by the exclusion of solar technologies from the report. The omission is particularly surprising given the Government’s Grand Challenge Building Mission, as set out in the Industrial Strategy, which includes unregulated energy (such as plug-in appliances and devices), that accounts for 40-50% of total buildings energy use, as well as regulated energy that …

Urgent: mis-selling alert

If you receive unsolicited communications from companies regarding system upgrades, we urge caution.

STA BLOGS: A very Dutch view

08 February 2019 In this STA Blog, Ruud Frijstein of iChoosr laments the abrupt manner in which solar policy is shifted and scrapped in the UK. Before sharing my thoughts, you need to know I am a straight-talking Dutchman. I am pretty sure one’s perspective on matters is impacted by being foreign. You might think I am overly critical – you can judge me by the end of this blog. I work for iChoosr, an international organisation that runs group buying schemes for residential solar. We play an important role, helping to boost the high volume markets that the solar …

PRESS RELEASE: United against the TCR

The STA has joined five other leading industry associations representing clean and decentralised energy in calling on Secretary of State Greg Clark to review the current approach to network charging reforms. [1] Ofgem’s reforms aim to reallocate how the costs of networks are recovered, with a view to recovering all of the ‘residual’ network costs through end-users via fixed charges, depending on a rudimentary categorisation of user type. This is a major change to the current approach where these network costs are recovered across end-users and generators depending on their electricity consumption.

PRESS RELEASE: Solar industry welcomes DfT funding for innovative solar technology trials

Today the Department for Transport published plans to fund trials of two distinct and innovative solar technologies which could help decarbonise Britain’s railways and future-proof its roads. A project which sees solar panels used to directly power trains has won a share of a £1.75million pot allocated to carbon-cutting rail schemes [1], while two projects, in Buckinghamshire and Central Bedfordshire, are set to test the potential of solar at surface-level, receiving £4.49million and £1.05million respectively to trial solar roads and footways [2]. STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said; “It is fantastic to see solar innovation being championed in the UK. …

PRESS RELEASE: STA responds to BEIS publication of ‘export tariff’ consultation

A consultation has been published today by BEIS on how a replacement for the export tariff could work. The consultation reflects extensive work by the STA, working with innovative suppliers and battery storage providers, on the current barriers to market offers for the small volumes of power coming from new solar homes. STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said; “We give these proposals a cautious welcome. We are very pleased the Government is unequivocal; small generators will be compensated for the power they contribute to the system, but the issue remains providing remuneration at a fair market rate. We are particularly …

PRESS RELEASE: Government confirms closure of export tariff

The Government published their response to the consultation on the Feed-in Tariff today, which delivers another disappointing blow to the solar industry and to the general public who want to engage with clean energy. Over 60% of people [1] say they want to install solar power yet the Government confirmed today it will end not only the Feed-In Tariff, as expected, but also the export tariff, which provides a relatively fair payment to people putting clean energy on the networks (albeit at a level significantly below 2018 average wholesale prices). STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said;

PRESS RELEASE: STA strengthened by three new Board members

The STA is delighted to welcome three new appointments to the Board representing key industry sectors. They join during a challenging period for the solar and nascent battery storage industries in the UK as we head towards a market competitive environment and fight for fair tax and market treatment of the UK’s favourite energy technology. Ahead of tomorrow’s Board meeting STA Chair Jonathan Selwyn said; “The Board is delighted to be joined by three talented and influential individuals who will each bring unique skills and knowledge to the Association at a key moment for the industry. Working closely with the Executive team, the …

PRESS RELEASE: Cost of UK large-scale solar could drop below £40/MWh by 2030

The STA has conducted a fresh assessment of large-scale solar costs which was explored with leading energy analysts & BEIS at an expert workshop today. The STA’s last assessment of solar’s Levelised Cost of Electricity (LCOE), published in November 2014, had anticipated costs of around £80MWh in 2019. The updated analysis for 2019 shows that solar has gone beyond the STA’s earlier expectations with LCOE costs of around £50-60/MWh in 2019, a figure which is also significantly below BEIS’s 2016 Central Estimate of Electricity Generation Costs. Although costs vary significantly on a site by site basis, the findings confirm that …

PRESS RELEASE: Ofgem clarification removes barrier to battery storage for 900,000 solar homes

Updated technical guidance by Ofgem [1] has been released, that clarifies the treatment of existing payments for homes that currently export solar power to the grid and that want to install battery storage and smart meters. The clarification is good news for existing solar homes looking to invest in battery storage alongside a smart meter because it means they will continue to be eligible to keep their ‘deemed’ [estimated] [2] payments for their solar exports. The market had previously been hindered by conflicting guidance. Nick Wood, Powervault and Chair of the STA’s Residential Energy Storage Working Group said; “Government has …