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Jeremy Leggett comments on drop in PV installations

Hitting the target: Solarcentury chairman, Jeremy Leggett, has called on the government to outline how it plans to achieve a PV capacity target of 22GW by 2020

Jeremy Leggett, Solarcentury has commented on the latest PV installation figures from the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) which show a sharp drop in the total amount of PV installed since the latest cuts to the Feed-in Tariff (FiT) on 1 April.

Writing on Jeremy Leggett’s Triple Crunch Log (www.jeremyleggett.net), the chairman and founder of Solarcentury said: “The heat’s totally gone out of the market. It’s not just about the Feed-in Tariff but the government has succeeded in confusing people and making them lose interest in solar power. They’ve done a great job in stuffing the embryonic industry.”

Leggett said the government should draw up a roadmap to help the industry achieve DECC’s stated goal of delivering 22GW of solar capacity by 2020. “We could help them draw up a roadmap. Surely they must at least now be minded to have a rethink of their policies. The nuclear ship is going down in the UK and they must have realised that the next question is about where the clean energy is going to come from. Or are they going to listen to the new carbon industries who think we can ‘frack’ our way to energy independence?”~

Statistics compiled by DECC show a weekly average of less than 2MW installed during the first half of April following the introduction of EPC requirements, a multi-installation tariff and lower FiT rates. This compares starkly with March figures which show a weekly average of 32MW.

There was a rise in figures prior to the government’s Feed-in Tariff deadline of December 12 and again following Supreme Court’s ruling that the government acted illegally in setting its December cut off meaning that all installations registered before March 3 would qualify for the old tariff.

Another surge in activity occurred in the run up to 1 April prior to the introduction of the multi-installation tariff and there was also a rush to beat the new requirement for an energy performance rating of at least D.

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