UK solar installations under the feed-in tariff reach 1.3GW

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has released its latest quarterly energy statistics which show that installations under the feed-in tariff (FiT) have reached 1.3GW across the UK.

The month of September saw the UK solar industry add 67.969MW of capacity under the FiT mechanism, taking it over the 1.3GW mark to 1,340,868kW total capacity. That means the UK has installed 747.586MW of solar in 2012 under the FiT scheme so far.

However, it is the performance of the >50kW market that will concern solar insiders. During the month of September only eight installations were registered between 50kW and 250kW. Many in the industry view the current FiT rates of 11.5/11p as far too low to stimulate any meaningful demand. Commercial rooftops provide an ideal platform for solar to generate meaningful electricity as well as cutting carbon. Not only does solar help protect businesses from rising energy bills it also better meets the usual daytime electricity demand of a commercial property.

The largest segment of the British market remained the <4kW retrofit market, which saw 13.513MW of solar capacity installed in September. Solar continues to dominate the FiT, with nine out of every ten installations registered under the scheme being solar. The full range of energy statistics published by DECC can be viewed here.    

The latest figures show mixed performances across the various different tariff bands that solar operates within. However, the market appears to be slowly recovering after the fourth cut to the feed-in tariff was introduced last August.

What do you think about the performance of the 50-250kW market? Are the FiT rates set too low? Will the market recover fully? Let us know in the comments.