Some solar developers maintain well located solar arrays where the power can be used onsite still offer attractive returns to businesses and investors, while hopes remain that the falling cost of solar technologies and the emergence of energy storage systems mean the sector will be able to rebound strongly from the steep cuts to subsidies in the coming years. Now a new initiative it is hoping to speed up this recovery, with the launch of a new smartphone app from climate action charity 10:10. Launched late last month and drawing on the success of the wildly popular Pokémon GO app, the Look Up app gamifies the search for buildings which could provide good locations for rooftop solar panels.
Business Green 12th Oct 2016 read more »
Millions of solar panels installed with a public subsidy produce no power most of the time and have to be backed up by conventional power stations to prevent blackouts, a report says. Solar power produced more electricity than coal in the past six months after a rapid rise in the number of solar farms but over the year they still account for less than 2.5 per cent of power generation, according to the report by the Adam Smith Institute, the free-market think tank. Britain’s 32 million solar panels are highly productive, generating at more than half of their capacity, for only 210 hours, the equivalent of nine days, over an entire year, the report says. Capell Aris, the author of Solar Power in Britain and a former senior manager in the electricity industry, used ten years of weather data to analyse levels of solar power production in the UK. Leonie Greene, of the Solar Trade Association, said that the report had understated the contribution of solar power, which generated 3.4 per cent of the UK’s power. She added that the report “seriously misrepresents solar power, and it is clearly deliberately designed to do so”. She said: “Overall, even including back-up costs, solar appears likely to be the cheapest form of power generation in the 2020s. So if we want the cheapest power for our homes and if we want to maintain our international competitiveness, we need solar power.” Dr Aris said that solar power could make a much greater contribution to the UK’s needs if the power could be stored in giant batteries or by pumping water uphill to new hydroelectric plants. He said, however, that such solutions were highly expensive and could be environmentally damaging.
Times 14th Sept 2016 read more »
The National 14th Sept 2016 read more »