The potential for UK feed-in tariff changes

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Possible changes to the recently introduced feed-in tariff (FiT) in the UK are being mooted, according to media reports. The Solar Power Portal, sister-site to PV-Tech and dedicated to the UK PV market, has heard rumors about the possibility that cuts may be made to the tariff prior to the 2012 official review and has produced this update. A Financial Times article published on Friday 24th September alludes to the fact that at this weeks Liberal Democrat conference apparent back room talks have taken place. 

The fear is that the coalition government could cut the incentives for solar installations as adoption rates have soared to over 10,000 since the FiT was introduced in April, 2010, according to Ofgem figures.

According to the FT report, cuts could be made before the proposed review, initially put in place when the FiT was launched.

The Renewable Energy Association’s Solar Power Group has sought clarification from the government and the official response from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), the body responsible for the tariff, is that currently DECC is not considering any changes but that under the spending review due out on the 20th of October it may be considered by treasury.

It should be noted that the UK FiT is not a levy on taxpayers, rather via a small increase over time to electricity prices that consumers pay. 

Language used in the FT report suggests that the FiT is seen as “generous,” though compared to other countries FiT systems, is clearly in the cluster of typical tariffs adopted, especially in Europe.

The timing of the review and lack of clarity over the motives behind the review have already sparked consternation from the fledgling solar industry in the country.

The government’s position on the matter will not be known until the results of the comprehensive spending review is announced on the 20th of October. Alan Whitehead, MP and chair of PRASEG, the parliamentary body that looks at renewables in the UK and David Wagstaff, Head of Distributed Energy at DECC, will both be speaking at an upcoming industry conference, Solar Power UK, on the 18-19 October in London.

 

18 October 2021
Intersolar South America, South America’s largest exhibition and conference for the solar industry, takes place at the Expo Center Norte in São Paulo, Brazil on October 18–20, 2021, and has a focus on the areas of photovoltaics, PV production and solar thermal technologies. At the accompanying Intersolar South America Conference, renowned experts shed light on hot topics in the solar industry.
19 October 2021
This year’s EV World Congress will hold a special role, not only as the first live EverythingEV event in over a year – a chance to renew your connections and re-engage with the EV sector face to face – but also as a chance to share insight and inspiration as world starts to look towards move on post COVID towards hitting ambitious decarbonisation goals in 2030 and beyond. As ever, we will be bringing world leading organisations, cities, and technology providers to the UK to inspire EV innovators, and delve into the challenges facing the sector as the UK looks to revolutionise road transport.
20 October 2021
Utility-scale solar is evolving, shaped by higher power modules and demand for increasingly lower levelised cost of electricity (LCOE). Those trends are also changing project requirements elsewhere, with inverters capable of delivering high power density and power capacity in strong demand. In this webinar, FIMER will detail how its innovative high-power, multi-MPPT string inverter and modular conversion solution can both meet those demands and transform the utility-scale solar sector for the better.
20 October 2021
The race is on but we need to sprint… With global climate talks fast approaching and time running out to prevent the most disastrous impacts of climate change, now is the time to act. The Summit will explore the opportunities that emerge from taking action on climate change and provide a clear pathway forward for governments, citizens and companies. Taking place just 10 days before the G20 meeting in Rome, on 30-31 of October, and in the lead up to the critical COP26 meeting in Glasgow from 31 October–12 November, this event will be instrumental in influencing ambitious global action.
10 November 2021
The solar tracker market continues to mature at breakneck speed, with designs and component selections becoming ever-more complex in the pursuit of better project economics. But a more simplistic design could deliver a triple benefit of lower Capex, EPC and Opex costs. This webinar will set out the ideal single axis tracker design for utility-scale solar farms. The design leapfrogs from decades of experience, with a comprehensive understanding and attention to the three cost structures of Capex, EPC and Opx. Sun and Steel Solar has prototyped a single axis tracker designed to deliver up to US$0.03/W in real savings compared to existing single axis trackers on the market. That’s US$30 million for every gigawatt deployed.
15 November 2021
The 10th edition of the famous Metallization and Interconnection Workshop, MIW2021, will take place in the Thor Central venue in Genk, Belgium, on Monday, November 15, and Tuesday, November 16, 2021 as a face-to-face meeting. We are longing for direct exchange of knowledge and ideas after a long time. Hopefully you can be part of it! But of course, the organizors will keep an eye on the evolution of the Covid pandemic. It will be assess carefully, whether the workshop can be held without major risks or excessive restrictions. We are looking forward to exciting talks, discussions and meetings and to welcoming you in Genk!

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