UK failing to perform in solar photo-voltaics

The UK market for solar photo-voltaics has fallen well behind other countries, according to figures from the International Energy Agency. Figures from IEA show that the UK installed 2.2 MW(p) of grid-connected solar photo-voltaics in 2004, equivalent to just 1100 solar roofs. That figure contrasts sharply with Japan and Germany. Total cumulative installations in Japan exceed 1 GW(p), or about 500 000 roofs. Installations in Germany in 2004 amount to 360 MW(p), equivalent to 180 000 solar roofs. European countries, generally, are well behind these figures. 2004 figures from IEA shows grid connected installations of 3 MW(p) in the Netherlands, 4.2 MW(p) in France, 4.4 MW(p) in Italy and 8.5 MW(p) in Spain. Jeremy Leggett, chief executive of Solarcentury, says, ‘News that in 2004, the UK solar PV market was little over 0.5% of the German total makes a mockery of the Government’s successive White Paper commitments to this sector. It was only two years ago that the Energy White paper confirmed the Government’s pledge to deliver a 10-year solar PV programme to “establish the UK as a credible player in the PV market, alongside Germany and Japan”.’

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