Urgent: Save your community PV project by registering
Readers may or may not be aware that the government has announced a consultation on drastically reducing or scrapping the solar Feed-in Tariff (FiT) from January 2016. We’re assuming the worst case scenario – that it will go completely. This is likely to mean that the business case for putting solar photovoltaic panels (PV) on most buildings will disappear.
Charities and community groups can delay this by pre-accrediting buildings with the electricity regulator, Ofgem. This allows you to fix the current FiT rate for a year. For sub-50kWp PV installations (which most schools probably would be), the only thing you need is an Energy Performance Certificate and an estimate of how much PV can go on the roof.
We have lots of experience of installing solar for community groups, charities and schools (we’re the solar installer for 10:10 Solar Schools, Friends of the Earth’s Run on Sun campaign, United Learning and Wey Valley Schools Energy Co-op) so we’ve been contacting our partners around the country to get them to pre-accredit everything they can.
BUT, the government is also planning to scrap pre-accreditation. We’re expecting an announcement any day now with a three week deadline. This means your members have a very small window of opportunity for pre-accrediting their buildings.
So, PRE-ACCREDIT NOW if you have a project under consideration and keep the option open to build a PV system that gets the current Feed-in Tariff rates, before they disappear.
Pre-accreditation doesn’t commit you to anything – it’s just an option to keep open a business case for PV on independent schools until Sep 2016.
Please do get in touch if you need any more information. And feel free to forward this to anyone who is involved in Community Energy.
We’re more than happy to do free desktop estimates for community energy groups, charities and schools around the country.