The government’s decision to abandon feed-in tariffs for solar power has presented providers with significant problems. Gabriel Wondrausch remembers the last time that the government announced reductions to the so-called feed-in tariff, the incentive that rewards customers for generating renewable energy and supplying it back to the grid. What was an obscure policy detail to most was a threat to Mr Wondrausch’s livelihood. It was nearly three years ago. He heard the grim details, loaded his dog into his car and drove to nearby Starcross beach in south Devon to consider his options. The previous tariff cut had sent the turnover of Sungift Energy, his Exeter-based renewables company, plummeting from £8 million to about £2 million. He had only recently steadied the business and here he was, facing another tsunami.
Times 3rd Sept 2018 read more »
Why rooftop solar pv will be failed by the Government’s so called market based approach. It’s rubbish for anybody to claim that rooftop solar pv arrays will be given a decent reward for the sale of electricity that they send onto to electricity distribution system through the competition existing, or likely to exist, on electricity markets. Yet that would appear to be the direction in which the Government are heading, under an argument that the market will reward the small generators for the power they supply – Under the feed-in tariff regime small generators have been guaranteed around £35 per MWh for this ‘excess’ generation – on top of the feed-in tariff payments for all of the generation. But. it seems, this guarantee is to be removed. Feed-in tariffs are over for new schemes, and, so, barring a successful pushback by the solar lobby – will be guaranteed payments for excess (to home consumption) send to the grid. As the Government gets down to considering the response to its consultation about arrangements to follow its ending of feed-in tariffs for solar pv and other renewables, we need to call out the so-called market competition nonsense rolled out by the Government to justify its apparent wish to end all guaranteed payments for excess power sold to the grid. For a start even £35 per MWh is a low price compared to the £45 per MWh or more that we have seen in recent times as the price of power on the wholesale power trading market. Even accounting for the costs of the variability of solar power this remains the case as the cost of such intermittency for the system is estimated to be less than £5 per MWh even in (hopefully) in the future when there is a dramatic expansion of solar pv.
Dave Toke’s Blog 2nd Sept 2018 read more »