Talking point

The first is a regular series, Liz MacFarlane, Zenex and Q-Gen offers her perspective on the industry

When REI offered me the chance to write a regular column, I jumped at the chanceBased inYorkshire, I spend my days running Q-Gen and Zenex and my evenings running around after my kids, helping them get their homework right.

My job places me somewhere near the middle of the supply chain meaning that I often hear opinion from both ends of the spectrum and I thought this might be a useful opportunity to share my findings.

The best way to get a feel for the industry, is speaking to people in the know at industry events. And despite the difficulties of 2012, Renewable Roadshow once again did a great job promoting renewables nationally to a diverse group of installers, pulling in 5,197 visitors. Solar PowerUKracked up a similarly impressive 4,500 visitors.

This leads me to believe that slowly but surely, there is an optimistic air filtering though, although clarity is needed in certain areas. PV for example, still needs to overcome the Feed-in Tariff fiasco and the public’s misconception that this technology is not worth investing in.  It’s actually within the reach of more people than it has ever been. While some installers seem to have written off the domestic PV market, there are others still making a real success of this area.

Finally, let’s hope that following DECC’s Green Deal ‘soft launch’ and announcement of a £125 million cash back scheme, we start to see a positive take up of this landmark scheme. What we need is a concerted effort and strong marketing (more on this from me next month) to ensure the consumer can makeinformed energy choices. So, it’s not just my kids that need to get their homework right – it’s especially important for the renewables world if we’re to pass on the message of their benefit to the homeowner.