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Here at North Star Solar, we wanted to take the opportunity to thank Baroness Neville-Rolfe, Minister of State for Energy and Intellectual Property, for mentioning us during her opening statement at the Clean Energy Live exhibition at NEC Birmingham, 5th October ‘16.

We are thrilled to be recognized as part of a cohort of innovative British companies who are helping to transform the British renewable energy sector. More importantly, we are thrilled that the renewable sector is large enough to see so many dynamic new companies offering fresh and innovative solutions to our crippling dependency on fossil fuels. It demonstrates that we can now provide our population with a viable alternative to fossil fuels, one that will not only create new jobs and commercial opportunities, but also help to avoid the environmental destruction and political tensions that oil and gas assets have created for at least the last century.

Renewable energy has never been so cost-efficient. The cost of solar power technology continues to decline. Over the next 18 months, solar panel prices are expected to fall a further 50%. In fact, The Independent recently reported that for the first time, more electricity was generated between March and September of this year by solar power than coal-fired power stations. Renewable energy is not a passing trend – it is the future.

At North Star Solar, we are combining the affordable cost of solar power with battery storage to provide customers with an all-round power generation and storage system that costs less than traditional energy sources. We have been working hard on honing our model over the last nine months, completing the final finishing touches. The end result is a holistic offering which empowers customers by giving them the savings instead of paying excessive profits to middle-men. Our gratitude to those who have helped us, and Baroness Neville-Rolfe for recognizing our efforts.

For more information about our HEMS energy solution, please click here.

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North Star Solar have announced a strategic partnership with Leclanché to use the battery company’s TiBox home energy storage system. The TiBox uses Lithium Titanate cells and was selected by North Star primarily for its battery chemistry strength and reliability.

North Star has developed a unique financing model which allows end-users to enjoy high savings in electricity costs with repayments coming directly from energy savings, no upfront payments, indeed payments of any kind are required. The TiBox is an integral component to North Star’s offering based largely on the high number of cycles. Paul Massara, CEO of North Star said “The 20 year life and 20,000 cycles of the TiBox solution sits well within our model and we are very excited about our partnership with Leclanché”.

North Star partners with local authorities and housing associations nationwide. Having recently announced its first deal with Stanley Town Council, County Durham, several more will follow soon. Paul Massara says “the solution is a win-win, customers benefit from lower electricity costs, our partners benefit directly and indirectly though carbon savings, the Grid benefits from greater stability – and the planet benefits from lower CO₂ emissions”.

Anil Srivastava, CEO of Leclanché explains “Leclanché is excited to be selected as the supplier for Battery Energy Storage Systems by North Star Solar. This new operational model opens the way to a far more efficient use of overall energy. Smart cities and connected homes are a new step illustrating a wider revolution in the energy generation and distribution market. We are particularly proud to contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions at a national level in the UK, we are particularly delighted to accompany North Star in this project”.

“Battery Storage is the game changer for solar power. Leclanché will support North Star who will offer secured and affordable electricity for homes, businesses, schools and Grid services” adds Thierry Perronnet, Executive Vice President Specialty Battery Systems.
Stanley Council in County Durham, who announced their decision to work with North Star Solar a few weeks ago, will be the first to benefit from this strategic partnership. This could see assembly of the TiBox systems starting in the UK very soon, leading to the creation of a number of new technology jobs and supply chain opportunities.

DECC solar announcement

Well finally the jury came back in! A 65% cut in #FiT’s rather than 87%, so what does this mean for North Star? Well all told it’s good news. By good it means of course our PV, battery storage and LED solution which doesn’t need any subsidy support anyway, still remains on-track, why wouldn’t it? Just greater electricity savings for consumers. But, with a 4.39p FiT we can still offer our old model too for social landlords providing free PV and residents enjoy free daytime electricity. So it’s the best of both worlds.

So the bad news. In the past we’d campaigned those financing PV were wrong, i.e. debt finance directly from pension funds is infinitely preferable to equity financing as its cheaper. Sorry banks. We extolled the virtues of having 100% of roofs installed in any given portfolio which works for us as far north as Aberdeen (maybe further north but we haven’t looked at any portfolios higher). We felt cherry-picking only the south facing, perfectly pitched roofs was just wrong and against community interests – it is unfair only 25% of residents have the benefit of free daytime electricity, it creates haves and have-not’s. But with FiT’s at 4.39p we have to limit ourselves now to installing around 75% of roofs with free PV in a portfolio. This is the extent of bad news as far as our model is concerned, everything else such a free solution to digital inclusion, profit sharing etc remains the same.

Nonetheless, the bad news in fact goes deeper. The amount of money allocated to FiT’s is limited and still remains subject to degression. This means time isn’t a luxury which can be enjoyed anymore. To take advantage of the FiT means having to move quickly. Simple as that really, no prisoners, no time to sit on the fence; first come, first served.

As we see it the good news goes deeper too. Despite the governments nominal-at-best support for renewables – the announcement of new fracking licenses yesterday and their [questionable] support of Hinkley, WE can still support renewables OURSELVES. With or without any subsidy. Do-it-ourselves, follow the path of breadcrumbs.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

Power to Us free solar pv

From earlier posts it’s easy to pick from threads our focus is combating fuel poverty – and providing an alternative source of nuclear-free energy. To mention our background, we began focusing on social homes working with social landlords and have broadened this to owner occupiers and the privately rented sector. Our new offering combines rooftop PV and battery storage.

But over and above social residents its you and I we’re focused on. I don’t know about you but I think living in the UK – and making any progress financially is very difficult, impossibly difficult even. I don’t know many people who can say at the end of the month they’ve done much else than break even. And we are the lucky ones, many millions of households cannot accomplish this; what should be, simple task. Actually this should read ‘expected task’.

I still remember the quote from Mr Micawber while studying David Copperfieldfor my English Lit O Level “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds and six, result happiness. Annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery”.  But with all the cuts going on and the fact real wage growth is pitifully low, severely under-performing inflation so many are forced into the twenty pounds ought and six category.

So the forthcoming announcement from North Star is aimed at us. Those in-work yet still having to balance finances. The aim is to lower our electricity bills in the real sense – i.e. they will really be lower unlike the Green Deal promises which at best were aimed at breaking even. Prices will be linked to inflation, not to electricity prices which give the Big 6 big bonuses – which are expected to double over the next 10 to 15  years, after having risen at an eye-watering 9.2% per year for the last 6 years, the highest rate in the EU. And there are quantifiable large CO2 savings, each roof saves 1 tonne of CO2 emissions each year.

To deliver this an important part of the equation we have covered-off is personal credit. In our view many companies view credit history incorrectly – it is to easy to have points taken off these reports and the reports have no information on a persons [current] ability or willingness to pay. Focusing just on a high credit score is wrong (for everyone else especially) and history clearly shows its flaws. Those with the highest credit ratings often have the highest borrowings too and in a down-cycle this is always exposed. So why use them? We have removed credit ratings entirely, those who want real savings can have them. ALL customers will pay 0% interest.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

peter@northstarsolar.co.uk

battery storage, free solar pvEnergy is the next sector most likely to be disrupted having seen this in a multiple of other sectors: publishing, retailing, telecoms, hotels even taxi’s. This is the strength of new power which changes the cozy world of old power.  New power changes the current model: control, held by a few to made by many, changes commands to shared, changes leader-driven to peer-driven, changes a closed structure to an open structure. New power goes around the status quo, embraces participation and importantly brings a religious belief in transparency. It co-ordinates collaboration and do-it-ourselves.

Looking back at the internet which started in 1969, back then the missing ingredient was storage. Computers didn’t have much neither did the networks and other devices connected to networks. Nowadays we have storage everywhere, computers, all manner of devices, right down to memory sticks. Storage transformed the internet making all the things we enjoy today about the internet possible.

Battery storage for homes will do the same for the energy market as mass storage did for the internet.  Going back to the internet, the incumbent telecoms companies at the time were not supportive of the internet, no surprise, and the way the internet grew was by connecting ethernets within buildings which was not under the jurisdiction of the FCC. These then grew and all became connected to the internet we know today. Replace FCC with the word utility company, the fact that solar and battery storage sits behind-the-meter, so you see what we mean? A future of non-nuclear clean energy generated by ourselves for ourselves.

The growth of the internet also shows us something else, the massive growth in bandwidth we use. So if the internet is a guide we will all be using far more energy in the future, powering things we cannot even imagine or contemplate today.

Clearly we are all at the beginning of a very steep curve. The implication of new power is it makes you want and expect change so that it will change more aspects of our lives. Collectively we are all challenging the 20th century mantra that agreements made behind closed doors are the best ones for us.

Our call to action is to embrace this change, drive it, insist upon it, don’t be an island and ignore it. It is absolutely worth trying for.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd.

peter@northstarsolar.co.uk

Solar plan North Star Solar
North Star Solar Plan following DECC FiT decision

While we all wait with bated breath to see what DECC says on October 23rd, our feeling is FiTs will be removed completely. DECC was a Lib-Dem department and isn’t liked by Treasury (putting it mildly). So the fact that DECC has overspent on renewables we feel is the reason for this show-stopper, i.e. It is ultimately a Treasury decision not a DECC decision. If anyone has a better or different reason please feel free to share it. Nonetheless as we see it is FiT’s weren’t necessary in the first place anyway.

So where do this leave us for the rest of ’15? We are very keen to install solar PV on roofs under the current tariff regime. We’ll still be here next year and will be announcing the shape of our ’16 model in due course.  The combination of batteries and solar PV excites us, it has done from the beginning and the new model joins these dots.

Right now we are looking to buy existing solar PV portfolios (which can include other forms or renewables) at 14x EBITDA. For rooftop portfolios with contracts we can install 250 roofs per week per project, and any commercial properties if a G59 is signed we can start installing straightaway. We can provide construction finance and materials if required.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

07891 026205

Solar panels for Housing Associations

ENergy Focus or ENF lists 1,426 manufacturers worldwide for solar panels, a bewildering number of manufacturers. Our current list of manufacturers we currently prefer is a lot shorter. Three. Jinko, JA Solar and Trina. These three are Tier 1 solar panel manufacturing companies and support the in-built optimiser we prefer over others from Tigo Energy.

We take the view in all industry’s only the strongest survive. And if we’re installing panels on roofs for 20 to 30 years we want the ones from the best manufacturers, after all there is no point in having a 25 year performance guarantee if the company has folded in the meantime. The same applies to for optimisers.

The solar panels must be optimised. We’ve mentioned this in the past but optimised solar panels are vital for rooftop installations. An array of solar panels works to the efficiency of the lowest performing panel and with roof installations there is more likely to be situations where a panel is shaded, from natural obstacles such as chimneys. Optimised panels work independently of one another so in the instance of any shading allow all the others to perform at 100% efficiency. They also send us information in real time allowing us to monitor individual panel performance.

Optimised panels are also vital for safety. In the event of a fire the fire services isolate the electricity by turning off the inverter. But this still leaves the panels producing electricity. Electricity and water, no more needs to be said. With optimised panels all panels can be turned remotely. No more needs to be said.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

peter@northstarsolar.co.uk

07891 026205

 

DECC solar power cuts
                   DECC solar power cuts

So an 87% cut! Who expected that, wow. Could it be the strength of the lobby of the Power Utilities? How else can one so devastatingly kill an industry built on the foundation of providing an alternative, clean source of energy. What’s not to like about solar? No more polluting fossil fuels. Well from the perspective of power utilities the answer is quite simple, profit.  Renewables’ present a highly disruptive source of competition to the utilities, Germany and the U.S. among other counties has shown them this.

So how does it affect North Star? Like others will we stop funding free solar PV too? The simple is answer is no though we have to adapt slightly to this new dawn.

We are still open for business, funding with debt from pension funds allows us more room to manoeuvre.  While we hadn’t expected this degree of cut (we expected 25% to 50%) nonetheless it doesn’t deter us and we have easily overcome this obstacle. We had this planned anyway though we thought we would have a few more years ahead of us before we’d need to implement this model. The social problems of fuel poverty and digital inclusion remain as ever present today as they did last Thursday morning.

The difference in our “today’s model” is residents will have solar PV installed for free, and our ability to install on 100% of roofs remains exactly the same. But whereas in the old model (pre last Thursday afternoon) residents would have got free daytime electricity, now they will have subsidised electricity. They will benefit from electricity around 20% cheaper than current electricity prices and this will be RPI linked. So the fact electricity prices is forecast to double over the next 10 to 15 years will not affect anyone.

We still have the solution to social inclusion, this has not changed either. Neither has our profit sharing model with councils and social landlords. For us the future is a bright today as it was last Thursday morning.

The DECC’s cut also demonstrates time is not a luxury which can be relied upon. The onus now is to act with haste.

Let us all support the solar industry for the good it provides everyone.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

free solar panels housing associations

Imitation is the best form of flattery“. Charles Colton.

North Star Solar’s offer to install 100% of roofs with free rooftop solar PV is creating waves, concern even. This must be surely a good thing? Shaking this industry is needed to get an even balance. The ‘some’ are banks, one in particular which feels having had a free reign on financing free rooftop solar PV with little competition has to now change its model of levying eye-wateringly high interest rates. Three cheers for competition.

North Star’s view differs from banks ultimately because we are not greedy. With financing directly from pension funds, we understand (and pension funds do too) that financing free solar PV commands low financing rates because of the implied government subsidies. Comparable Index Linked Gilts today trade on a yield of minus 80 basis points. So financing at 6% to 8% makes no sense, the model is flawed and creates out-sized profits for banks which add no value to the deal.

A bank which we all know has just recently upped the level of rooftops they will install from 25% to 75%. Great to know we’re getting to them though it’s still not 100%. Try harder please. This bank offers social landlords the facility of buying 25% of roofs in a social roof portfolio at £1.10 per watt in 2 years time, an option. But what this bank seems to forget, or chooses to ignore is social landlords own or manage these roofs, and these roofs have a value. North Star recognises this important fact and feels profit sharing, creating social capital for communities is THE thing which housing associations, councils and communities need most.

So North Star will match this banks offer by offering this very same option for 1 Pence per Watt, not £1.10 per Watt. In fact we give this for free but if a value needs to be ascribed then let’s put it at the lowest value so our offer can be compared like for like. Furthermore, North Star will pay social landlords the same amount as this banks 25% equates to from the very start, it is something we have maintained from the beginning. So you don’t need to wait for 2 years.

A point also not made clear with this banks financing option is if the option is taken up, it is incumbent on the social landlord to replace the financing with their own. Er, sorry this makes no sense – the financing should be transferable. North Star’s finance is fixed for 20 years and with these ultra low rates who knows where interest rates will be in 2 years time? The probability is higher as opposed to lower. So check the fine print in this option, not only is the deal not good it does not make economic sense. So yes, try before you buy or just try North Star because our offer comes at no cost with no strings attached. It is not a money-back guarantee because we pay all the costs and stand by this principle – it is our risk and we share the reward from the beginning.

Too good to be true? Not really it comes down to just not being greedy. Furthermore, our solar panels are all optimised using Tigo optimisers, we feel better, safer and offer far superior performance. Ask others who use bank financing if their panels are optimised? They should be for solar PV rooftop installations.

And let’s not forget digital inclusion. The North Star free solar PV offer comes with free broadband attached too. Others use commonly analogue SMS messaging for transmitting performance data, truly something belonging to the analogue world of the past.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

solar pv

Operations and Maintenance (O&M) is a topic we are very passionate about at North Star Solar. As long term owners of rooftop solar PV assets; along with our partner social landlord’s we want the highest performance from roofs.

This starts from the get-go. Panels have to come from Tier 1 manufacturers, the largest solar panel manufacturing companies which devote resources to R&D as well as most likely to be around in 25 years’ time – otherwise there is no point having a 25 year manufacturers warranty in the first place. For anyone considering installing solar PV on rooftops we feel installing panels from these manufacturers is a must. Like all things in life you get what you pay for.

Panels also have to be optimised. Traditional panels work like Christmas tree lights, if one fails they all stop working. While fine if the panels are in fields and are easily accessible by engineers, on roofs it is different as you need scaffolding to get to them. If an optimised panel fails all the others remain working at maximum efficiency.

Also roofs have inherent shading issues from objects such as chimneys. If a panel is shaded, using traditional panels they all work to the efficiency of the shaded panel. So the output from a roof installed with traditional panels will NEVER perform optimally.  Optimised panels let the other non-shaded panels on the roof operate at 100% efficiency. We think optimised panels on rooftops is truly a necessity.

North Star insists on installing optimised panels and we find it peculiar our competitors installing free solar PV do not believe this is so important. Compare us to others offering free solar PV and ask if they intend to install optimised panels? They cost more but we feel they are well worth the extra cost. Their reply will most probably be no, and they’ll provide a flimsy excuse why optimised panels are not necessary, but in reality they are. It is obvious really why a rooftop installation needs optimised panels.

The real reason those using bank finance cannot afford optimised panels is because this form of financing is very expensive as the banks take a fat layer of [unnecessary] fees. We circumvent paying these fees by going directly to pension funds for financing which means we can afford to pay more for materials (and for labour installing the roofs). Our financing is the lowest in the industry enabling us to install solar PV on 100% of roofs in any portfolio. A portfolio in Aberdeen suits us perfectly. Quite simply we feel anything less than 100% of roofs installed with solar PV creates problems both for the social landlord and the community. It does not provide a satisfactory solution.

So what happens next after the roofs are installed? Like everything in life technology needs constant monitoring. The traditional method of finding faults on rooftop solar PV installations is to look at the utility bill and see the credit to the utility bill, has it changed or stopped? There has to be something better than this, we live in a world of technology after all.

At North Star we check the output from each panel in real-time to an irradiation data base providing us with accurate irradiation anywhere in the UK accurate to within 90 metres. To monitor roofs we need broadband connectivity and we pay for this bandwidth for each individual roof. Others sometimes try and piggy-back off of the residents own broadband – which is fine if residents have broadband but many do not have any, nationally only 37% of social residents have broadband.

This is why we can offer residents free broadband as we do not use all the bandwidth we pay for. So we have an entirely free, full workable solution for digital inclusion. And it means we spot faults before anyone else, right down to which individual panels is faulty. This information is given to the installer or the social landlord if they wish to handle repairs themselves, and the fault is rectified. Its simple, clean and efficient.

We think this is the best model for rooftop solar PV O&M and make no charge for this service. Its entirely free to our social landlord partners as we have this platform already built. Others charge for O&M but we take the view with cloud costs so low it should be a free, free for 20 years at least.

The last point to ask other installing free solar PV is what share of revenues will they pay you the social landlord? Who owns the roofs anyway? We share and find others generally try and avoid answering this question. We believe in full transparency.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd.

Govtfrackingregulations

David Cameron on the subject of Fracking: “International evidence shows there is no reason why the process should cause contamination of water supplies or other environmental damage, if properly regulated. And the regulatory system in this country is one of the most stringent in the world. If any shale gas well were to pose a risk of pollution, then we have all the powers we need to close it down”. The New York Times reported that “fracking can be done safely – when regulations are followed”.

When regulations are followed” is a caveat most politicians seem to use as their disclaimer. Doesn’t this imply most probably the government is aware that human error is the cause of most of the fracking accidents, or fraccidents as they are now known?

But how can we trust the government to regulate this industry when it tries and fails miserably to regulate finance, indeed probably the most overly regulated industry which exists? The current LIBOR scandal just proves the government cannot regulate industry’s satisfactorily, not to mention the losses rogue traders rack up often. There’s the food industry too, we all remember the horse meat food recalls. While regulation is fine in concept, if it cannot be monitored properly accidents WILL happen. So expect them and don’t be surprised.

So for the government to proclaim it will regulate fracking just isn’t true. History clearly shows it fails at this job and in the meantime we will potentially be suffering from mini earthquakes beneath our homes. How long will it be till insurance companies add a clause in our insurance policies making them not liable for this risk?

The U.S. is far more advanced than the UK for fracking:

Huffington Post, 9/12/2012, ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. has become the first major insurance company to say it won’t cover damage related to a gas drilling process that blasts chemical-laden water deep into the ground. The Columbus, Ohio-based company’s personal and commercial policies “were not designed to cover” risk from the drilling process, called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, Nationwide spokeswoman Nancy Smeltzer said Thursday.

Health and environmental groups claim fracking can contaminate drinking water. The gas industry says it’s safe if done properly. Nationwide said risks involved in fracking operations “are too great to ignore” and apply to policies of commercial contractors and landowners who lease property to gas [fracking] companies.

“After months of research and discussion, we have determined that the exposures presented by hydraulic fracturing are too great to ignore. Risks involved with hydraulic fracturing are now prohibited for General Liability, Commercial Auto, Motor Truck Cargo, Auto Physical Damage and Public Auto (insurance) coverage.”

While new jobs and revenue are generally considered a good thing, many worry that we’re sacrificing future environmental health and natural landscapes for immediate gain. One of the major concerns stems from the chemicals within the fracking cocktail. Close to 600 chemicals can be used in the cocktail, some of which are considered highly toxic. Lead, uranium, methanol, hydrochloric acid, and formaldehyde are common ingredients pumped into the ground, and there have already been cases of these toxic chemicals contaminating drinking water in the U.S. So expect this to be coming to us too.

So who is going to protect us? Insurance – probably not. Does the government care? I think we all know the answer to this.  How will we benefit from fracking? Energy security will be/is the answer. But this comes at a very high cost whereas North Star will install solar PV on 100% of homes, both social and residential for free. Lets start a nationwide debate on this issue. It will affect us all, in all parts of the UK, it doesn’t matter where you live. Do you want the Blackpool fracking earthquakes coming to you?

The answer to this is vote no to fracking and vote yes for solar. Solar is free, abundant, green and completely safe. It is a resource which will never die out. And as mentioned we install rooftop solar PV for free. This isn’t a hard sell, it’s to point out that their IS an alternative to fracking. An altogether better one. You don’t have to have free solar installed by us, others offer it too.

Does fracking help save the planet? Not in a million years though one roof installed with solar PV saves one tonne of CO2 emissions each year – and meanwhile provides residents with free daytime electricity.

Peter Sermol

Managing Director

North Star Solar Ltd

Well, er, yes. And we feel rightly so. This is directed primarily to anyone considering installing free solar PV on roofs of social residents (or private residents including RTB too).

Let me explain why and you’ll see. Financiers view financing free solar PV as amortising project finance. This means by the end of the term (20 years in the case of rooftop solar PV, the duration of the Feed-in Tariff) all the costs, or capital expenditure, capex for short (all the costs of materials and labour) is amortised (reduced) to zero. It has to be done in this manner because at the end of the period the principal (the capex) needs repaying and if it isn’t done gradually this will not happen. So everyone has to do this, North Star included and it is done generally at a rate of 5% per annum. 5% x 20 years = 100 (the capex amount).

Banks have a Return On Equity (ROE) expectation and charge generally between 6% to 8% for their money to finance free solar PV. That’s fine, we like everyone else has no problem with a lender charging a reasonable return for the risk they assume.  This forms the basis of all financial markets. Higher the risk higher the return we all understand this.

But UK solar PV isn’t a high risk investment! 10 year government Gilt yields are 2.25%. And the market really prices solar risk as UK government risk (called quasi government risk as it isn’t directly government risk). Which means the banks are making a substantial profit (a killing in other words) ultimately from the subsidies which are paid by you and I. We feel this is unfair.

Housing Associations are paying this cost too since the true return banks need to install free solar PV is 11% to 13% (5+6 to 5+8) and the ONLY roofs which fit this return profile are south facing perfectly pitched ones. Hence the reason anyone but us only offers free solar PV on south facing roofs. The maximum anyone using bank finance will install free solar PV is 25% of any portfolio of roofs.

We take the rather simplistic view this is wrong. Wrong especially for the community. We finance ourselves directly from pension funds and our costs of financing is far far lower. Which means we can afford to look at portfolios of roofs on an average productivity basis. This allows us to install 100% of roofs in any portfolio, a portfolio in Aberdeen suits us admirably.  We take the view everyone in a community should benefit from free daytime electricity. Why create social tension when it isn’t necessary? Installing 25% of roofs just leaves the remaining 75% of residents complaining – and legitimately so we feel.

Are banks greedy? I think I’ve answered this and we all know this answer anyway. Ask others offering free solar PV using bank financing whether they offer any form of profit sharing? We do and we know what their answer will be. It won’t surprise you but nonetheless please go ahead ask the question. After all, who owns and manages the roofs?

Peter Sermol

free solar panel installation housing associations, councils

Right now none of us are any the wiser, what will happen to the subsidies post this DECC consultation period? We don’t know like anyone else.

But what we’d like to see is a simpler structure. The current Export Tariff stifles the roll out of smart metering. So get rid of it. It sounds probably counter-intuitive from a company installing free solar PV as it sounds like its a source of our profit, but frankly we don’t need it for our financing and we want to see this sector of the solar PV market grow. And we’re not greedy. Removing the Export Tariff will help this sector to expand and fully establish itself, we all want this. Sorry banks, we know you need it and it stops your model working but it is what it is. You’ll just have to be a little more inventive or perhaps lower your yield expectations.

At North Star we finance 100% of capex using the Feed-in Tariff only and with FiT levels as they are we can withstand many FiT degressions. As in all liquid markets, markets drive the price. Isn’t this how it should be?

So let’s be sensible about this and not be greedy, the public ultimately pays these subsidies and middle-men are making a [significant] profit from this. This isn’t how a real market should operate.

Peter Sermol

 

This isn’t a post with a new-fangled scientific finding no-one knows about to give a new reason to say no to fracking. If it were you wouldn’t read any further as we all know no-one will listen.

We know fracking isn’t right, nothing more needs to be said. Does Whitehall drink water from Lancashire? That answer is obvious. Contaminated water supplies from fracking accidents, termed “Fraccidents” is merely one of the dangers, but nonetheless the government owns all the money earned from oil and gas. All the clotted cream of gas revenues will be lapped up and lost in some Whitehall budget we’ve probably never even heard of and never will. A cat fight among mandarins nice to contemplate but it’s held behind closed doors in cozy private clubs over lunch and Brandy’s.

So this is about an alternative to fracking.

This isn’t some rant from the left. It’s a pragmatic view of where we are and where we stand. The government wants fracking and they hold the power to make sure we have fracking. Pandering to voters is a thing of the past now.

On the fracking hand we have lies about revenues, reserves and the potential of ecological disasters. But the government looks at fracking as a money pit which it believes can bail them out of part of its mess. And on the other we have an infinite resource of green, safe, renewable energy. Solar. Which WE can do something about.

North Star Solar finances itself directly from pension funds, the financing costs is low and enables us to install solar PV on roofs of social residents and private residents alike. We don’t need like others offering free solar just the perfect south facing roofs, ALL roofs fit as we model on average productivity.

Help make a yes vote for solar a no vote for fracking.

Let’s get this message out there once and for all.

Peter Sermol

© 2016 North Star Solar