By Ross McGuiness
Well the verdict is in! Since the middle of January this year, the Court of Appeal has been considering whether to grant a hearing for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) for its appeal against the High Court’s December ruling on UK solar feed-in tariffs.
Outcome – Denied!
The appeal which the government lodged against the high court ruling that the cuts were illegal has now been thrown out by the courts. Four different judges have now ruled that what the government did was illegal and they have reinstated the old feed in tariff rates.
Effectively this brings us back to where we were before December 12th. There now exists a small window of opportunity for customers to avail of the old rates on the provision that systems are installed and connected to the grid by the 3rd March. Achieving this is easier said than done, yet this represents a huge opportunity for businesses to avail of higher returns on investment and reduce payback periods. The short time frame involved means that it is unlikely we will see a massive rush to install systems like we did in the run up to the 12th December.
On the 3rd of March we will return to the new rates, whereby the Feed in Tariff will deliver 15.2p per kWh on a 50 kWp system. This still represents a great deal for the customer, payback periods and IRR’s are still very strong largely due to the 30% – 40 % reduction in module price. PV is still viable at these new rates and it is very important that businesses in this country realise that. If businesses are in any way thinking of installing PV, now is the time to take action regardless of whether you can avail of the temporary higher rates or the new rates after March 3rd.
So act now! As an industry we must now get back on track and restore consumer confidence, the message from Kingspan is loud and clear – PV makes sense, it is still viable
Ross McGuinness, Area Sales Engineer, Kingspan PowerPanel