Severn Trent Water (SVT) has installed its third solar array at one of its water treatment works near Birmingham, as part of its plan to generate half of its own power from renewables by 2020. The 550kW array, which cost the company £600,000, is the third to be built. The firm said it aims to have around 40 similar arrays up and running at its sites by the end of March. Once the programme is complete, SVT will focus on anaerobic digestion (AD) from waste, food and crops as its primary source of renewable electricity.
Utility Week 14th Jan 2016 read more »
The Feed-in Tariff rate which is paid out for rooftop solar electricity sold into the grid comes into effect today (15 Jan 2016) Householders who go solar will from now onwards be eligible for the new rate of 4.39p/kWh. Whilst lower than what the solar power industry wanted, the Government greatly improved on its original proposals for the new solar Feed-in Tariff scheme after a campaign by the Solar Trade Association, businesses and an unprecedented response by the public. For householders the new rate mean a return on investment of around 5% – a tax free, inflation-linked return, higher than any rates on offer today for savings accounts, where interest rates are at a record low. A competitively priced solar installation is likely to be paid back – the breakeven point on the investment – in around 13 years and it is possible for householders to improve payback further through intelligent use of their system.
Scottish Energy News 15th Jan 2016 read more »
The cost of solar panels could soon go up by as much as £900 for the average home after the government said they should no longer qualify for a lower rate of VAT because of EU state aid rules. A consultation on the VAT change ends on 3 February. The Solar Trade Association said solar was still attractive even though the payback period for an average system – costing about £6,000 – would now be about 14 years, up from eight years with the current incentive rates.
Guardian 14th Jan 2016 read more »