Solar Thermal to stay in UK Renewable Heat Incentive

15.12.2016

The solar thermal industry will breathe a sigh of relief after months of uncertainty over the decision of the UK government to drop its plans of removing solar thermal from the Renewable Heat Incentive. The Solar Trade Association worked hard to prevent the removal.

Following a concerted effort by the Solar Trade Association (STA) the UK Government has dropped plans to remove solar thermal from the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). The STA provided convincing evidence and galvanized strong stakeholder opposition to the proposals during a consultation launched in March; 92% of respondents opposed the changes.

The STA is certain, that the reinstatement of solar thermal in the RHI means that there is a great opportunity for growth in a sector that already boasts some of the most advanced manufacturing in the world.

Furthermore STA points out that while a typical business user will be able to earn back the cost of their installation within seven years with the Incentive, without it the process would take 21 years. This means there would be no new investments. Retaining solar thermal will also help the fuel poverty alleviation agenda and the efforts to reach the Government’s own target of 12% renewable heat by 2020, as the organization points out.

The solar thermal heating will now remain in the RHI for domestic systems with no change from the current level of 19.74 p/kWh of support over seven years. Applications of solar thermal in industry up to 200 kW in size will also continue to be supported.

Philipp Kronsbein / STA

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