Solar panels in the UK, don’t make me laugh
“Solar panels don’t work in the UK”. Yes, they do work and brilliantly. If people actually researched the subject properly, they would find out that solar panels actually run less-efficiently in hotter climates than cooler ones.”
You don’t even have to take my word for it, as now over 600.000 solar panels installed in Scotland alone have taken place in the last five years.
Annual UK solar radiation figures:
Scotland: 900-1000 kWh per sqm.
Midlands: 1000-1200 kWh per sqm.
South coast: 1100-1300 kWh per sqm.
Then there’s the countless solar heating panel installations which were installed prior to the current feed-in tariff scheme. Solar heating panels were the most popular type of solar panel installation in the UK before the advent of the solar tariff schemes.
The UK actually receives 60% solar energy that the equator gets and actually work on some cloudy days too. Each sq/m of your roof receives between 900-1300 kWh of usable energy per year.
As any adopter of this technology will enthusiastically testify, and also hundreds of ethical installers from Scotland to Cornwall who see these systems performing on a daily basis across the seasons can all confirm that the old perpetuated myth that “solar technology doesn’t work in the UK”, is actually just that – a myth!
An annual yield breakdown will look something like this:
Jan – 2.9%
Feb – 5.2%
Mar – 7.7%
Apr – 10.8%
May – 13.2%
Jun – 14.0%
Jul – 13.5%
Aug – 11.6%
Sept – 9.0%
Oct – 6.2%
Nov – 3.6%
Dec – 2.4%
Solar panels are sold worldwide and work in countries with similar northern European climates in the UK such as Germany, Denmark and Sweden.
The question is not whether solar panels in the UK work? The question is how can I get my solar panels installed by an ethical installer, with the best technology at the right price. This peace of mind, that I have given to tens of thousands of solar pioneers over the years and hopefully my Heat my Home project can help you too?
The UK solar industry is positively unrecognisable today compared to the industry I first encountered a decade ago when only ‘ex-hippies were bold enough to install them’. A lot has changed since those days, and people actually used to laugh when I told them there was an energy crunch on the horizon – they don’t laugh anymore!
In today’s world, the solar savvy are more likely to have an Audi/BMW parked on their drive than a Citroen 2CV and now adopt solar technology in preparation than to save any Whales.
As a boy scout, I remember their motto of “be prepared!” never left me and I would love to think that the early years of our solar industry were driven by ex-scout members. My scout leader used to say that problems never reveal themselves until it’s too late. That quote always stuck with me.
The really smart, don’t wait for others to warn them.
The road ahead for the UK’s energy policies
Your energy bills are expensive because of foreign-owned privatised energy companies requiring blank cheque subsidies for being dependent on finite resources – period!
The reason for this madness are, they don’t want us all generating our own and are doing their best to deceive you about environmental issues that come with the industrial scale burning of dead dinosaurs and therefore attempt to crush alternative energy technologies because it threatens their ability to make money from you (the cash cow).
Reducing dependence on volatile supply lines from Russia, the Middle East and our own waning North Sea oil reserves seems like common sense. If the last decade has taught us anything, it’s that your gas and electricity bills can rise and will rise again at the whim of geopolitics. Bitter experience shows that it’s five steps forward, one step back situation for your household heating costs.
Who wouldn’t want to be less dependent on that!
And then there’s our political leaders whose bought and paid for decision making is swimming against the global tide. Either way, they are hedging all their bets on fracking as fracking companies in the US are going out of business. This type of energy extraction is very short-termism and because of its high cost of operation – will raise the cost of your energy bills further still.
Their crazy blank cheque approach to hydrocarbon exploration and the bottomless pit that nuclear subsidies require will suck up money from the chancellor’s coffers quicker than any extraction from our newly polluted groundwater. The delusion of energy self-reliance in the UK without a mix of alternative technologies, is just that – an illusion.
Who wouldn’t want to be less dependent on that!
And then there’s our political leaders whose biblical-scaled stupidity or bought and paid for decision making is swimming against the global tide. Either way, they are hedging all their bets on fracking as fracking companies in the US are going out of business. This type of energy extraction is very short-termism and because of its high cost of operation – will raise the cost of your energy bills further still.
They’re crazy blank cheque approach to hydrocarbon exploration and the bottomless pit that nuclear subsidies require will suck up money from the chancellor’s coffers quicker than any extraction from our newly polluted groundwater. The delusion of energy self-reliance in the UK without a mix of alternative technologies, is just that – an illusion.
At the time of writing in the current geopolitical realm, we are currently experiencing low oil prices, which is making everyone feel good at the petrol pumps. This temporary relief is by design only, and caused by Saudi Arabia attempting and succeeding in destroying the competition in the fracking and renewable energy industries. In addition, our border disputes with Russia and China’s economic slowdown are also contributing, so the expectation of continuing low oil prices isn’t guaranteed long-term.
What this ‘snapshot in time’ shows is that nothing is certain where foreign and domestic energy policies are concerned and thus the cost of heating your home long-term is arbitrary.
In comparison, a typical operational lifespan of a photovoltaic solar installation is thirty plus years. Retrospectively, we first discovered the North Sea oil reserves in the 1980s. As that bonanza has long since been consigned to history, PV solar panels are still operational and generating at most of its original performance levels. Unlike the North Sea.
I don’t know that any technology that lasts for thirty years without being restored or overhauled, except solar panels. If you want to sit smugly in your solar-powered home for the next thirty years, while the world around you become increasingly crazy – then solar panels are for you.
Your energy bills will always be large because foreign-owned privatised energy companies want it that way and they will continue to do their best to put you off this ‘green crap‘ (Famous last words Mr. Osborne and Mr. Cameron 2005) because it threatens their ability to make money from you – the cash cow.
Like I said, those who laughed in those early days are not laughing now.
"Feel the pride."Stuart Lovatt September 11, 2015
Founder of Heat My Home.