UK solar power growth halves for second year running. Labour says figures show government’s commitment to green energy is ‘nothing but an empty PR move’. New solar power installations halved in the UK last year for the second year in a row, as the fallout of government subsidy cuts continued to shake the sector. Labour said the figures showed the government’s commitment to green energy was “nothing but an empty PR move”. The UK numbers were so poor that they caused overall EU solar growth to flatline at a time when record amounts of new solar were added globally. Europe’s solar trade body said the UK had the slowest growth of the world’s top 20 solar markets, the lowest prospect for growth among its European peers in coming years and the worst political outlook. James Watson, the chief executive of SolarPowerEurope, said: “Solar power has been voted the most popular energy source in the UK, it is therefore sad to see the UK government not take advantage of the huge potential of solar.” New solar capacity in the UK declined to 0.95GW last year, down from 1.97GW in 2016 and 4.1GW in 2015. The fall was so steep that the UK acted as a drag on the EU as a whole. “Even though 21 of the 28 EU markets showed growth, this wasn’t enough to compensate for the British losses,” the trade body said in a new report. By 2022, SolarPowerEurope forecasts the UK will add just 2.1GW of solar, while Germany will add 20GW, France 11.7GW and Spain 8.8GW.
Guardian 19th June 2018 read more »
Edie 19th June 2018 read more »
In response to the rate of solar installation in the UK halving for the second year in a row, Kate Blagojevic, Head of Energy at Greenpeace UK, said: “Just as they did with onshore wind power, the government has once again identified a clean energy technology destined to dominate the twenty first century, and are doing everything in their power to prevent the UK from benefiting. In both cases they have successfully crushed young, growing industries with rapidly shrinking costs, and redirected their political and financial support to nuclear, an old, shrinking industry with rapidly growing costs. Blocking some of the most promising technologies and subsidising the biggest failures is about as far as you can get from an economically rational energy policy, and that’s what Britain needs now.”
Greenpeace 19th June 2018 read more »