Since strike prices (guarantees selling price per MWh of electricity) for solar and wind were announced yesterday, we can compare them to nuclear. In 2018 large scale solar will get paid 100 pound per MWh, and onshore wind only 90 pound per MWh. This compares to 92.5 pounds per MWh for the new to be build nuclear reactor in Hinkley Point. But this nuclear reactor will only operate 5 years later, from 2023 till 2058.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has today reduced the subsidy for large-scale solar. Despite saying only two days ago ““In order to provide investor certainty levies for renewable projects will not change, such as the renewables obligation (RO), contracts for difference (CfDs) and feed in tariffs (FiTs).” they announced today that large scale solar support will be reduced. Continue reading
The 28 nations of the EU have approved the minimum price on Chinese solar panels. From the 6th of December, a minimum price of 56 Eurocent (47 pence) per watt is valid with nearly all Chinese manufacturers. This minimum price on solar panels will be valid for two years, untill the end of 2015. So what does this mean for consumers looking to buy solar panels in the next two years? Continue reading
Now we’ve seen the technology roadmap of solar cells, what does this mean for panels you can actually buy? We’ll compare the cost and efficiency roadmap from 2012 till 2017 for three major solar panel manufacturers: Yingli (Largest in Normal Silicon), FirstSolar (Largest in Thin Film) and Sunpower (Largest in High Efficiency). Who will be the solar panel cost and efficiency winner? Continue reading
Three very common questions when buying solar panels are: “what is the best panel?”, “should I buy high efficiency panels?” and “should I wait for better technology in future?”. These questions all relate to the efficiency of solar panels and in this blog post we’ll compare the efficiency by technology type and provide our best answers for these common consumer questions about the best solar panel.
Solar panel prices have slightly increased during 2013 and are currently 10% higher than at the start of 2013. A 4kWp system (16 solar panels) that used to cost £5.000 is currently available from £5.500. On a South-facing roof in these panels will pay back about £850 per year, which is a return of 16%. Despite price increases, solar panels still provide an great return due to a stable Feed-in-Tariff subsidy. Continue reading
Due to technological advances, fossil fuel reserves have been growing in recent years. But to stop climate change from progressing, we need to leave the majority (70%) of these fossil fuels in the ground. How many solar panels are needed to replace the energy from these fossil fuels? Continue reading
The UK has only 6 big energy companies but over 3.000 residential solar installers. This number of solar installers has been dropping in the last year and currently shows signs of stabilization, despite a market that is smaller in both the number of installations and the value per installation. This means larger installers with multiple offices continue to compete directly with sole traders to win over the same consumer. What are the reasons that residential solar does not show clear economies of scale, and what can be expected for the future of this industry? Continue reading
Let’s make the price per kWh of electricity more tangible. Per person we use about 2,000 kWh of electricity in the UK. This means a potential saving of 3 pence per kWh (from worst to best price per kWh) equals saving 60 pounds per person. Even better, solar panels can generate up to 4,000 kWh per year, which means they can provide all electricity for two people or half of the electricity usage of a family of four. The graph below shown how the UK electricity usage in kWh per person compares to other countries: Continue reading
The price of electricity in the UK in 2013 averages 17.2 pence per kWh according to updated analysis of CompareMySolar, following last years article. After looking again at the standard tariff rates for low, medium and high users of the big six energy companies in the UK the average price is 16.6 pence for direct debit payment (up 10% from 15.1 pence) and 17.8 pence for standard credit payment (up 9% from 16.3 pence). Over the last four years electricity prices of the big six energy companies have increased by 29 – 37% Continue reading