Scotland’s largest solar-power parc officially opens today in Perthshire. Located on the Errol Estate near Perth, the new solar farm has been developed by Bristol-based Elgin Energy and will deploy solar PV panels supplied by global provider Canadian Solar. The 13MW scheme has been constructed on 70 acres of land and will ultimately provide power for more than 3,500 homes. Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Energy Minister, will formally ‘cut the ribbon’ to declare the new solar farm open for generation. And ‘more solar’ is also one of the key points raised by Scotland’s Renewable Future forum in its ‘manifesto’ for the new Scot-Govt. Scottish Energy Policy.This project is proof that large scale solar PV systems work well on the east coast of Scotland and the firm is continuing to source solar sites across Scotland, with a view to developing schemes that are financially viable without subsidy support.
Scottish Energy News 7th June 2016 read more »
Mel Courtney is choosing his words carefully. Like many executives in the UK solar industry, the general manager for Kingspan Energy in the UK and Ireland is keen to look to the future after a bruising 12 months and talk about the “relative optimism” that is slowly returning to the market. But BusinessGreen is asking about the fall-out from the government’s controversial decisions last year to slash subsidy support for solar deployments and Courtney pauses as he considers the best way to phrase what it is he wants to say. “We were surprised and shocked to hear the announcements from the Conservatives last July that they intended to make the cuts that they subsequently went on to make,” he replies. “We were getting a totally different message from DECC before that, that they were going to make a rooftop solar revolution. It went totally against the messages that were out there previously. The industry has had to find its feet and is still finding its feet.” Having gone through a period of retrenchment Courtney is now focused on ensuring Kingspan Energy plays a key role in any UK solar market recovery, and again he hopes being part of a larger group will prove beneficial. “We’re focused on the PV side, but we can integrate LED lighting as part of a zero energy lighting solution and we also look at a building holistically, so if there are any barriers to PV adoption like the condition of the roof we can deliver a roof refurbishment,” he explains. “We have the suite of products within Kingspan to deliver a full solution…The Kingspan name has opened a lot of doors for us.” Courtney is now optimistic that name can continue to open doors, even if the financial returns from solar rooftop deployments have fallen. “What we are now seeing is relative optimism in terms of what is coming through in our pipeline,” he reflects. “The benefit of commercial and industrial rooftop installations have is you are competing with retail electricity, you are not competing with wholesale electricity prices.
Business Green 6th June 2016 read more »