Feed-in tariff slashed for large-scale solar PV

Feed-in Tariff, Solar PV

The Feed-in Tariff for large-scale solar photo-voltaic installations, solar ‘farms’, has been sharply reduced by the Government following a public consultation. Announcing the new rates, Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said, ‘The new tariffs will ensure a sustained growth path for the solar industry while protecting the money for householders, small businesses and communities’

The new tariff is 8.5 p/kWh from 250 kW to 5 MW and stand-alone installations, 15 p/kWh from 150 to 250 kW and 19 p/kWh from 50 to 150 kW.

The sudden review of FiTs was in response to indications that large-scale solar PV projects would be deployed much more quickly than originally expected. The Government view is that the fall in the cost of solar PV models being faster than expected is resulting in the original target internal rate of return for solar PV of 5% being exceeded. The result was a demand for larger PV schemes of more than 250 kW, which was not foreseen in the original modelling for the first three years of the scheme.

Government estimates suggest that a 5 MW solar PV scheme would cost the FiT tariff about £1.3 million a year, which could support PV installations for about 1250 households.

SummitSkills has welcome the news that small-scale domestic installations will benefit from the review of FiTs and the resulting benefits for the electro-technical industry. Keith Marshall, chief executive, said, ‘In comparison with large-scale projects, which rely heavily on one provider, an increase in smaller domestic opportunities will provide the industry with more chances to compete for and showcase environmental technology installation.’

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