The days of the Feed-in Tariff (FiT) Scheme are numbered, but what’s next for small-scale low-carbon installations?
On 31st March 2019, the generation and export tariffs under the FiT scheme will end, but many in the industry are concerned with the lack of clarity from the government as that date creeps closer.
A policy gap between the end of FiT and the beginning of a new scheme could compromise solar installations, a sector which has developed a good momentum in recent years and could be a key part of a low-cost low-carbon future for the UK.
Concerned? Have your say!
The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has published the following:
- Consultation on the FiT Scheme (closes 11.45pm on 13th September 2018)
- Call for Evidence looking into the future of small-scale low-carbon generation (closes 11.45pm on 30th August 2018)
Follow the links for more information and to respond to the proposals.
What has the FiT Scheme achieved?
According to the Solar Trade Association (STA), Feed-In Tariffs have:
- enabled around 800,000 households and 28,000 businesses to generate their own clean solar power to date;
- contributed to the transformation of green energy in the UK; last week 10% of all UK electricity was generated by solar.
Is solar a good financial investment without FiT?
The price of a 4kW domestic installation has reduced dramatically since 2010, from around £12,000 to £5,000 today, making it much more affordable even without subsidies.
Solar will continue to make economic sense to households with high levels of self-consumption, and battery storage and ‘behind-the-meter’ is developing, enabling households to benefit from excess energy produced and maximise their investment.
The STA is looking for new policies to boost the domestic market such as through Green Mortgages and the expansion of interest-free loans, which are currently available in Scotland, across the UK.
Additionally, they say that further measures to boost solar on social housing will be needed, such as through ECO3.
What will happen to the Microgeneration Certification Standard (MCS)?
Currently, all installations that receive a Feed-in-Tariff have to be carried out by a company which is registered with the Microgeneration Certification Standard (MCS) in order to qualify for the subsidy.
The STA believe that the government must facilitate the continuation of these customer protections and they are seeking urgent government confirmation on the issue.
They say that such an important quality standard should be a mandatory requirement for all future installations, whether linked the FIT or not, as it gives consumers peace of mind about the expertise of the installer and valuable protection against mis-selling.