FiT take-up trebles since introduction

The number of energy installations signed up to the Feed-in-Tariff scheme has more than trebled since it began in April. And solar panels are the energy generator of choice for […]

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By Kelvin Ross

The number of energy installations signed up to the Feed-in-Tariff scheme has more than trebled since it began in April.

And solar panels are the energy generator of choice for those people and companies taking part in the scheme.

Figures released by Ofgem reveal that in April, when FiTs were introduced, there were 425 registered users. Of these, more than 95% were of photovoltaic technology, with the others being hydro and wind.

In May, the number of installations more than doubled to 908, with the majority still photovoltaic, while in June the rate of registered installations rose to 1,438.

As in previous months, the largest increase was in photovoltaic. The number of wind installations has also more than doubled since April.

The total installed capacity of all registered installation was 15.2 MW at the end of the first quarter of the scheme.

Even though photovoltaic installations represent over 97% of the total number of registered installations, the total installed capacity of photovoltaic technology was less than half of the total installed capacity across all installations.

All of the photovoltaic installations registered in the first quarter of the FiT scheme had the installed capacity of less than 50 kW, with most having an installed capacity of less than 4 kW.

The four hydro installations registered in the first quarter of the FIT scheme were medium scale (up to 1.5 MW), which represents just over a fifth of the total installed capacity. The registered wind installations were predominantly small scale – less than 50 kW.

Just under half of the total installed capacity of registered installations is in the domestic sector and most of those were photovoltaic technology.

By the end of the first quarter of the FIT scheme, the total installed capacity of commercial installations was 6.2 MW, 41% of the total. The technology types comprised small-scale wind and photovoltaic and medium scale wind and hydro.

The FIT scheme is an environmental programme introduced by the government to promote widespread uptake of a range of small-scale renewable and low carbon electricity generation technologies.

The scheme was designed to open up low-carbon electricity generation beyond the traditional energy companies by making it more cost effective for communities and householders to buy and install renewable generation units.