Government ‘must stop publishing misleading solar statistics’

The Solar Trade Association says official figures relating to solar photovoltaic deployment in the UK are inaccurate and calls for the method of data collection to be reformed

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The government must stop publishing misleading solar deployment statistics.

That’s the verdict from the Solar Trade Association (STA), which says the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s (BEIS) latest figures relating to solar photovoltaic deployment in the UK are inaccurate – it claims the methodology for data collection relies on subsidy schemes that have been closed down, such as the feed-in tariff.

The organisation has called on BEIS to implement the Energy Data Taskforce’s recommendation of introducing a generation asset registration system to accurately monitor solar and battery deployment.

It notes accurate data is essential to help ensure safe, efficient and cost-effective grid operation and electricity supply, as well as revealing the state of the market in order to drive investment and providing a collection of reliable evidence for research.

STA CEO Chris Hewett said: “Understanding the exact make-up of our energy system is a vital step on the road to net zero. The energy sector will not be able to fully decarbonise unless it is certain of which forms of generation are contributing to the grid.

“We need all assets to be registered and publicly catalogued as set out under the recommendations of the Energy Data Taskforce. Until this happens, BEIS must cease publishing statistics which are missing significant portions of capacity such as large-scale commercial and industrial rooftop photovoltaic installations, as these are too large to be captured by microgeneration certification registration.”

ELN has contacted BEIS for a response.

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