solar energy in kent Solar Water Heating Systems and Government Grants

Kentish Flats seen from top of North Downs near Lenham. Turbines are about 30 miles away - see map



Renewable Heat Incentive
This document sets out the responses of the SOLAR Trade Association (“the STA”) to the SOLAR related sections of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) consultation.
SOLAR Scammers still going strong
Which? has done an exposé which includes Everest Double Glazing’s sales techniques and prices, Which? state that Everest came close to breaking the law if not actually breaking it.
SOLAR Trade Association expresses concern to Chancellor
We, the relevant trade bodies representing the renewable heat industry, are writing to express our very significant concerns over the looming funding gap for our sector. We are aware that the funds currently supporting the two grants schemes the Low Carbon Phase 1 and 2 are about to run short and that the programmes will almost certainly have to be closed.
Today the SOLAR Trade Association welcomed the announcements by Ed Milliband regarding SOLAR energy, but expressed disappointment that the proposed rate of investment will be lower than that for other green energy technologies.

energy saving trust

Clear Skies

Feed in tariffs

Coming soon: The new Renewable Heat Incentive

Renewable Heat incentives will start in 2011

Commencing in April 2011, the RHI will guarantee long-term payments for installers of solar thermal, ground source heat pumps, biomass boilers and other renewable technologies.  It will apply to heating at all scales, from households to public sector buildings to industrial processes in factories.

Anyone who installs a qualifying renewable heat system after July 15th 2009 is eligible to claim the Renewable Heat Incentive.

The expected tariff structure is in the region of: 17p per kWh over a period of 20 years.

My system, carefully monitored in 2005 was seen to generate about 4,000kWh over the course of a year. Thus I would have expected a payback through the RHI of about £680.

A typical system should therfore benefit by about £500 per year.

A typical system should cost about £4,000 to £4,500.

DECC comment on the Renwable Heat Incentive

To meet the 2020 15% renewable energy target, DECC need to develop new ways of generating renewable energy in all sectors, including heat.  Heat generated from renewable sources accounts for approximately 1% of total heat demand – this may need to rise to 12% to hit our binding EU targets.

Renewable Heat Incentive Consultation response
26th April 2010: link to SolarUK website


No longer available: The old LCBP grants

LCBP: Low Carbon Buildings - Domestic

LCBP II: Low Carbon Buildings Phase II - Commercial

Click here to see details of the old CEN grant system

Solar Photovoltaic (Electric)

Small Scale Installations(Stream 1 Applicants)Grid-connected

The grants available for Solar PV were initially 50% 0f the installed cost. This has now changed and there is an upper grant level depending on the size of the installtion.

Only £5.23 million spent on home microgeneration as LCBP ‘collapses’

The Low Carbon Building programme of support to home microgeneration has effectively ground to a halt as Government prevarication and un-economic limits put off home owners from installing renewable energy.

Click to Read full article on
Natural Choices

The budget allocated by the DTI to the Programme is a total of £20M to cover the years 2002–2005. This amount will be used for both the Small Scale and the Medium and Large Scale Photovoltaic Grant Schemes (grid-connected and stand alone) inclusive and the costs of administering the programme.

The indicative budget for all small scale applications (grid-connected and stand alone) is £6M.

Recent changes to Solar PV Grant awards : bbc news article

The grant scheme at time of writing is not that easy to understand - dti point you to the Energy Saving Trust for grants, but the EST points you back to the DTI for more information...

Try the Low Carbon Buildings website but as Phase 1 is the bit that's for domestic buildings, as at May 2007 we don't really know what is going on. It will most likley be a £4 - 500 grant for solar water and a percentage with an upper bound for all the others.

In Kent also try The Green Energy Centre but as at May 2007 it looks more like a load of grants aimed at business.

Solar Water Heating - Grants (this has now been superceded )

See: Mr Wicks wants evidence - "Taking Carbon out of home heating"

£400 from Clear Skies

Additional grants are also available from various local authorities, these grants can extend the £400 clear skies grant to cover up to 50% of a solarwater heating installation.

Link to Clear Skies Grant page - this scheme was superceded, but the new scheme has yet to come into action! Try this link Low Carbon Buildings website

Currently (Jan 2005) I am not aware of any additional funding within Kent.

This is on the Council's website

Is your south facing roof on the front or the back of the house? If it is on the front, you are much more likely to need to apply for planning permission. If the panels are on a flat roof then you may well need to apply for planning permission. In all cases, we recommend you check with your local authority, and if your home is a listed building or in a conservation area then getting permission may be difficult.

A bit like "planning officer fiddles while planet burns" The whole point of a conservation area is to keep something intact, like it was .. Global warming will change these conservation areas for ever, but in a conservation area we can't make the slightest change to save the conservation area!

When will these idiots wake up and realise that Global Warming is someting that is now, even the Govt agrees! Are we all going to go down the pan because some idiot planning officer won't give permission for wind turbines, or solar energy! Do they really think that peope are putting these up to blight the community or the environment- no it is the opposite, these people are the one's who care. they are putting their money where their mouth is!