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 …

PRESS RELEASE: STA reaction to 2020 Budget

STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Unfortunately this Budget is thin on measures to tackle climate change and support the transition to a low-carbon economy. Renewables are vital to reaching net zero, and without good policies in place to support the uptake of solar we will fall well short of the 40 gigawatts needed by 2030 to keep on track. Time is running out to act.” “The freeze on the carbon price support rate is particularly disappointing, as is the lack of any meaningful policy on energy efficiency and green improvements for existing homes, such as solar and battery storage.” …

PRESS RELEASE: Solar industry calls for net zero Budget

The STA is calling on the government to deliver a budget that unlocks the potential of solar energy in the UK and empowers the transition to net zero greenhouse gas emissions. Exemption for solar from business rates, fair tax treatment, zero-interest loans for green home improvements and a commitment to procure renewable energy for the civic estate are the key recommendations made to the Treasury in the association’s budget representation. [1] Additionally, a recommendation that the Government hold regular CfD auctions which include solar was adopted as policy last week. [2] STA Chief Executive said: “This government has begun to …

PRESS RELEASE: Solar industry hails Government plans to run new clean power auctions

Today the STA has welcomed Government plans to hold a new round of clean power auctions, set to take place in 2021, for solar and onshore wind. A new Contracts for Difference auction will enable greater deployment of the cleanest, cheapest forms of power generation today, cutting costs to consumers by £200m-£300m annually. [1] The policy is one of the STA’s key priorities for 2020. [2] Chief Executive Chris Hewett said: “Today’s announcement marks a major shift in the right direction for Government policy on onshore renewables, and a welcome opportunity for the solar industry.” “New clean power auctions for …