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Feed-in Tariff (FIT)

Solar PV makes environmental and financial sense

The Feed-in Tariff (FIT) will pay a premium for energy generated by renewable energy systems like solar panels. It is designed to get more of us using renewable energy and encourage low-carbon living.

The scheme has been introduced by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) and is administered by the energy watchdog Ofgem.

To register, your installation must be registered by your installer of the MCS database. You can then apply to your energy supplier (e.g. Good Energy who are known to be particularly helpful with this) and they will add you to the central FITs register and agree to make payments to you.

As a result, many people now treat Solar PV in particular as an investment as well as a carbon-saving alternative to fossil fuels.

These are the main facts about the Feed-in Tariff:

  • Payments are guaranteed for 20 years from the day you sign up.
  • You are paid for all energy generated, whether it is used or exported back to the grid.
  • You are paid an export tariff on top of this.
  • Rates are index linked (RPI) and so will continue to rise in line with inflation.
  • FITs are designed to generate a 5-8% return on investment for customers.

The rate of premium you are paid depends on the size of your installation, as this has been divided into brackets as per the table below. To qualify for the full tariff rate, buildings must attain an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D or above. This is a measure brought in by the government to try and promote energy efficiency as the first step in greening our housing stock.

To find out more about EPCs, read our article What is an EPC and Why Do I Need One? or give your local branch a call. They will be able to give you a good idea of your likely rating and will even arrange for an energy assessor to visit as part of their service.

 

FIT Rates for Solar PV from April 2014
System Size BracketTariff Rate per kWh
≤4kW 14.38p
>4-10kW 13.03p
>10-50kW 12.13p
>50-150kW 10.71p
>150-250kW 10.25p
>250kW-5MW 6.61p

 

Upcoming deadlines

The next change in tariff is due on 1st August 2014

The FIT is scheduled to change in value as time goes by. The government has introduced a cost control mechanism that aims to keep returns from the FIT in line with cost decreases in the industry in order to preserve the longevity of the scheme.

For more information on potential changes to the FIT, you can go also direct to the source: the Department of Energy and Climate Change website; or call your local office and speak to a member of staff who will be able to talk you through it.

 

 

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