Ben Cosh, Managing Director of TGC Renewables, has called on the UK solar industry to embrace Government collaboration rather than continue with confrontation.

Cosh believes that in order to develop a solar market that is independent of subsidy; the industry must accept that dialogue between itself and the Government needs to improve. A vibrant UK solar industry must be based on a solid foundation that sets out a clear, well-defined glide path to grid-parity.

The argument follows a recent court decision that throws into question when tariff regressions will come into effect, following a legal challenge that determined the Government’s decision to reduce the solar PV feed-in tariff before the consultation period ended was unlawful.

However, the successful legal challenge has only served to heap more uncertainty on the solar industry and places enormous pressure on an already tight departmental budget. Cosh argues that the Government desperately needs to provide increased certainty and decisiveness for the industry, which the current legal challenge prolongs.

Cosh has also urged the Government to reconsider solar PV’s role in helping the UK hit its 2020 targets, as it is currently excluded from the Government’s Renewable Energy Roadmap.

 “While the inevitable Government cut to the solar feed-in tariff should not – despite a court ruling and the vocal few – spell the beginning of the end for established players operating in the UK solar industry – it does sound a note of caution. Simply put, while the tariff cuts should drive greater efficiencies in the production and installation areas of the market, further action is required in order to foster and promote genuine long-term industry growth,” he explained.

“UK solar technology has consistently outperformed alternative clean technology, with the market creating jobs and driving growth and innovation both domestically, and overseas.

“However, since the long-term Governmental aim is to achieve true grid parity and sustain national energy security, commitments to the solar sector remain a necessity.”