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.
North Star Solar Ltd