What solar energy describes is the energy that comes from the sun, and can be converted to something useful. Not to say that the heat in itself is not useful, it’s what allows us to live on this planet without freezing to death! In this sense however, “useful” is meant in terms of being able to be used for something else, like electricity or a hot water system.
And there’s a very good reason that we should use solar energy in this way, rather than conventional forms of energy like fossil fuels. That’s because, for one, fossil fuels are going to run out one day (they’re non-renewable) whereas we’re always going to be getting energy from the sun (and when we’re not, not being able to power our televisions will be the least of our worries). So this is a renewable form of energy that will not run out. Perhaps even more importantly though, it is clean, meaning that it does not cause any carbon emissions that lead to the excessive warming of the Earth, a process known as global warming.
It’s for this reason that the government has introduced financial incentives in order to encourage, and enable, more people to get involved with solar energy by getting solar panels for their home.
What are the Financial Incentives?
As mentioned, there are two main ways of using solar power, one is to generate electricity and the other is for a solar hot water system. Each of these has their own financial incentives, but they work in much the same way.
The feed in tariff (FiT) applies to the PV solar panels which create electricity. For every unit of electricity that you produce with your solar cells, you will be paid a certain amount. How much depends on the size and type of system that you have, but at the moment the maximum amount is 43.3p per kWh. For an average system this usually translates to £1,000 a year.
The renewable heat incentive (RHI) works in the same way, although you are paid for renewable heat energy generated of course, rather than electrical energy. This is a scheme that is not yet in effect, but will become available for households next year.
All of the money that you get through financial incentives for solar energy comes completely tax free. Also, you can be assured that whatever brand you start on will retain its purchasing power because it tracks the retail price index (RPI) which monitors inflation.
It should also be noted, however, that for new users the maximum amount you can get is set to be reduced each year in order to encourage immediate uptake. Once you have started at a certain rate, however, that’s what you will stay on.
Solar Energy UK
To be eligible for these financial incentives you have to use MCS accredited installers for your solar installation, like the ones provided by Solar Energy UK. Get in touch for more information and to get a free quote.