Industry leaders claim latest solar feed-in tariff not a problem
Industry leaders claim solar investment is as profitable as ever, despite the cut in solar power feed-in tariffs (FiT) taking effect from today.
The FiT for domestic solar power has been reduced to 16p/kWh from the previous 21p/kWh and the commercial feed-in tariff has been cut from 15.9p/kWh to 13.5p/kWh.
The FiT lifetime has also been reduced from 25 to 20 years.
Despite these changes, the Solar Trade Association (STA) remains defiant that investing in solar will continue to be attractive households and businesses.
The trade association announced yesterday that the price paid for power exported back onto the grid would increase to 4.5p today, better reflecting the true market value of locally-generated power.
STA ceo Paul Barwell said: "Our figures show that solar is a no-brainer investment. Compared to the returns you can get these days in banks and many other investments, solar provides a very solid and attractive return. That is particularly the case if you consider energy bills are rising faster than anyone expected."
Solar installer specialists Joju Solar also remain unfazed.
"The feed-in tariff is becoming a smaller and smaller proportion of the benefits of a solar system," said Joju Solar, Technical Director Dr. Chris Jardine.
"The cuts in feed-in tariffs although they grab headlines, are actually masking the real story which is that there are remarkable savings to be made from putting solar on your roof."
However, early indicators today suggest that the latest tariff reductions may not be encouraging consumers to invest.
Conergy UK's managing director Robert Goss, said: "Unlike last year, where big tariff reductions encouraged booms in solar installations, the August 1st reduction has had less impact. Whether this is down to consumers being more cautious, tighter lending from the banks, or because payback times are only being postponed by a year or so, remains to be seen."