The UK’s largest commercial solar developer, Octopus Investments and its dedicated in-house developer Lightsource Renewable Energy, has reiterated its commitment to the nascent UK solar market despite new legislation that significantly reduces support for the technology across the UK.

Over the last 18 months the UK solar industry has lurched from crisis to crisis, as Government legislation failed to predict the rapid growth of the market following the introduction of the feed-in tariff. Despite the tumultuous backdrop, Octopus managed to deploy around £300 million worth of projects since the start of 2011.

Commenting on Octopus’s solar strategy, Kat Johnston, an Investment Manager at Octopus, said: “The August 1 deadline is a milestone, but it doesn’t spell the end for the solar energy sector, far from it. The reduction in FiT rates was inevitable given that solar technology is getting cheaper. We think that solar still has a great future and remains a key part of the UK’s renewable energy commitment.

However, Octopus is already building on its solar successes, expanding its investment into the broader renewable energy market. Recently, the investment company announced a partnership with Geothermal International that will see them install ground source heat pumps in select Sainsbury supermarket sites.   

Johnston added: “Octopus has worked hard over the last 18 months to support Government’s commitment to renewable energy. It is now a rapidly growing market that is positively impacting the economy, including creating opportunities for UK smaller businesses. Our work with Lightsource has seen us develop into one of the biggest solar investors in the UK and we look forward to building on this success as we continue to expand our investment alongside solar into other areas of the renewable energy market.”

The green investment company is actively looking at developing more solar sites across the UK under both the feed-in tariff and Renewable Obligation schemes, and predicts a bright future for the UK solar market.