A solar panel industry looks forward

As someone who’s involved in the PV solar panel (photovoltaic) industry since 2004, I have seen the highs and lows of the industry over the last few years, with a continued stream of grants and tariff fiasco.

Power My Home PV Solar Panels UKIt has broken my heart recently, to see how poorly the latest government policies dealt the industry, but not all the blame should be lade at the door of the government.

The recent media interest from a high-profile court case, which cast a dark cloud over the industry, left consumers confused and left their confidence at an all-time low.

In a nutshell, the heart of the problem (if you can call it that) was the rapid reduction of installation costs over the last two years.

Solar panel installation costs today, or in some cases 40% cheaper than in 2010 (amazing eh!).

However, this information then acted upon by the original feed-in tariff plans and some solar companies took full advantage with “free solar panels” or “rent-a-roof” schemes.

This scheme was a sure-fire recipe for an unsustainable industry and the Department of Energy and Climate Change had to pull the plug. For an industry based on sustainability, there was a bucket load of irony there.

A bright future for solar panels

As always the optimist, I have ever bestowed the positives for solar panel technology, and I see a great future for it. It is very rare in life that you come across a product that has multiple benefits. Solar technology is one of those extraordinary products that give their owners many benefits not just one.

The most apparent being fuel-saving, less long-term dependence on conventional energy with an annual income and increase in property value, sellability.

The best reason of all is pride. Pride is a compelling emotion which has caused many of humanity’s darkest hours, but in this case, pride can be used to put to positive use.

Time and time again, I hear new owners of this technology beaming with pride. As one lady once put it, “It’s like being the first on the street to get a TV, back in the 1950’s”.

The question to ask yourself is, when will you go solar?

The inevitability of escalating energy costs is frighteningly evident in today’s world. Any householder, who wants to continue throwing good money after bad, need only keep as normal.

For an energy-savvy household or business, investing in solar technology will benefit you financially for the next 25-30 years. Alternative technology is fast becoming a must.

Beat the banks and the energy companies

The government’s new outlined plan involves a mix of technologies which will prevent the nation’s lights from dimming. With the aforementioned reduction in solar installation costs, the feed-in tariff rate has been adjusted to a more sustainable 15.44 pence per kWh.

This figure takes into account the cheaper costs of installation compared to 2010, and the need to reward financially early adopters. The new feed-in tariff rate gives a respectable 6% return on your investment. Better than recent bank rates, and add years of dead money saved.

The feed-in tariff payments are payable for 20 years and index-linked over the same period. Allowing for the fact, PV panel technology last approximately 30 years, that’s incredible 15 rough years of free power, which is a new age of unimaginable electricity costs, is no bad thing.

See what I mean about the positives of this technology.

As always, earlier adopters get rewarded more than later adopters, so don’t dilly dally if you want to receive the current higher rate.

The age of the energy-savvy is upon us.

"Light is life."

Stuart Lovatt 2012-05-26
Founder of Power My Home.