UK increases funding for solar projects

UK Energy Minister Mike O’Brien today announced that 15 new solar photovoltaic (PV) energy projects across the UK will receive almost £1 million in funding.

UK Energy Minister Mike O’Brien today announced that 15 new solar photovoltaic (PV) energy projects across the UK will receive almost £1 million in funding, bringing the total amount awarded to medium and large-scale projects since the Government established its scheme in 2002 to £17.4 million.

Part of the Government’s aim to see the UK generating 10 per cent of its electricity needs from renewable resources by 2010, the solar PV grant programme is funded by the Department of Trade and Industry and managed by the Energy Saving Trust (EST).

Since the establishment of the scheme, 166 medium and large-scale projects from the UK have been granted funding and on completion will generate 5391kWp of electricity.

Mike O’Brien said: “Projects in the hearts of our towns and cities and in the remotest islands are set to benefit from this next round of funding for solar generation.

“Solar installations are a visual reminder that we need to be increasingly innovative in our electricity generation if we are to stop our day to day lives damaging the environment.”

Recipients of this round of solar PV grant awards include London’s National Maritime Museum, which will use the installation to generate renewable energy for the site. Following Plymouth Council’s phased installation of 350 solar powered bus stops, the council is using its grant to rebuild its bus interchange. This will see 112 advanced hybrid-crystalline photovoltaic modules built along a curved standing seam roof.

Photovoltaic systems are non-polluting energy sources that convert sunlight directly into electricity. According to the DTI, for every year a typical household system operates, one tonne of carbon dioxide emissions can be saved.