Renew On Line (UK) 68
|Extracts from NATTA's journal
Renew, Issue 168 July-Aug 2007
|Welcome Archives Bulletin|
2. LCBP Woes
The Household ‘micropower’ scheme within the Low Carbon Building Programme has certainly got off to a bad start. The temporary suspension of the scheme while it was re-vamped, certainly didn’t help. But some progress has been made, with 2175 projects funded, (1467 solar thermal, 313 solar pv, 242 micro wind- see below), although there have also been some contractual problems for installers: see below. The government has been trying to provide other sorts of help (see below) and in May it produced a plan for a revamped version of the scheme (see box below), with £11.9m available including the extra £6m from the Budget, though the DTI said half of the original £6.8m already allocated by March 2007 had been spent. But with the maximum grant per household savagely cut, there were cries of pain: ‘woefully inadequate’ was FoE’s verdict.
Revamped Household scheme
H & V News, the weekly magazine for the heating and ventilation trade, reported on April 5th, said that the Government ‘is planning to charge installers £1,800 and renewable product manufacturers £3,600 just to register with the UK Microgeneration Certification Scheme (UKMCS). This is before they have passed the assessment to the new requirement, allowing them to install or offer renewable technologies to their customer’. It claimed that potential installers were being ‘fleeced to join scheme’. It noted that the UKMCS is ‘the third-party certification scheme for microgeneration products and installers, developed and operated by BRE Certification. From April 30 2007, the UKMCS is set to replace the existing Clear Skies & Photovoltaic programmes, under which installers & manufacturers could register for free’.
He also provided the following table showing the number of applications received and grants awarded under the LCPB household stream in 2006, Jan and Feb 2007.
Applications received Grants awarded
As can be seen, after an average of 540 grant awards per month, the
brakes got slammed on in Jan, with a monthly cap being imposed, as the
money ran out. Wicks noted that ‘the purpose of the monthly cap
was to ensure the resources did not run out before June 2008’.
The scheme was then temporarily suspended (for April) while the DTI restructured it with £6 extra allocated in the Budget. Wicks added that given the extra £6m ‘we aim to continue funding until June 2008, by which time some of our wider measures to promote microgeneration should be taking hold’.
Welsh Micropower Plan
The Welsh Assembly has developed a new Microgeneration Action Plan
Scottish Micropower Plan
The Scottish Executive has produced an Energy Efficiency and Microgeneration Strategy and has allocated an extra £2m for SCHRI, the Scottish Community & Householder Renewables Initiative, to help support the rapidly growing micropower market. This follows an additional £3m provided for SCHRI last year.
* The Scottish Lib Dems have said they want a 100% renewable Scotland by 2050, with wave & tidal boosted. They, the Greens and and the now ruling SNP are all anti nuclear. Expect battles!
Free home energy monitoring
The DTI and DEFRA have proposed making real-time electricity monitors
available free of charge to all household in Britain to help combat
climate change. Electricity suppliers would be required to provide these
displays free to all customers who want them. All new and replacement
household electricity meters would also come with
The roll out of the monitors with all new electricity meters and to households who request one, could cut UK CO2 emissions by 400,000 tonnes a year by 2010, equivalent to taking about 100,000 cars off the road. A survey by the Energy Saving showed that most people wanted better information about their energy use. Another survey by Logica CMG of over 2,000 people, found that 82% would like a real time display.
*DEFRA has also launched Labour’s new climate change pledge card,
which sets out how the Labour Government working in partnership with
councils, energy companies and the Energy Saving Trust will help households
take simple steps to cut energy bills by
EST check Micro-Wind
The Energy Saving Trust has launched the first independent, UK wide assessment of household wind turbines at sites across Great Britain and N. Ireland, aiming to monitor one hundred household wind turbines. The assessment will take into account a number of factors including the local wind resource, where they are installed on the house and the impact of nearby buildings and trees on the performance of the turbine. According to the EST, household wind turbines could potentially supply 4% of the UK’s electricity and reduce carbon emissions by 6%. To achieve this, they say that the consumer needs to know what will work most effectively for them.
Philip Sellwood, Chief Executive of the Energy Saving Trust, said ‘To date there is no independent, real life assessment of wind turbines installed on homes. Consumers need to know how much electricity they can expect to generate from a wind turbine, how much money it will save them, and how much it can reduce their carbon footprint. The experience of other wind turbine owners will also be of tremendous benefit in helping potential new owners to decide whether a wind turbine is right for them.’
Project Aims The research will look at:
The project is jointly funded by EST’s partners including B&Q, British Gas, EDF Energy, E.ON UK, Northern Ireland Electricity, RWE, Scottish & Southern Energy, and ScottishPower. Installation of monitoring equipment is scheduled to take place by June 2007. The trial is scheduled to run for 12 months, with results in Autumn 2008.
Planning rules to be eased
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