What Are Feed in Tariffs in the UK?

What Are Feed in Tariffs in the UK?

There seems to be some amount of misunderstanding as to exactly what feed in tariffs are all about in terms of solar PV panels. Whilst UK consumers understand that they can be paid for sending electricity into the grid which has been produced with their solar energy systems, there really is much more to it than that. What is a feed in tariff? In order to answer that, it is important to understand why the UK initiated the programme.

The Advent of the Feed in Tariff Scheme

In 2009, amidst growing concern over geopolitical unrest and dwindling supplies of fossil fuels (as well as global warming!) the UK initiated an incentive program to get more homeowners to begin utilising sustainable energy, especially solar power. The Feed In Tariff programme started in 2010, but those who had systems installed between July 20009 and April 2010 were eligible for a standard rate FIT.  This was introduced as all previous grant programmes finished in June 2009.  So, what is Feed In Tariff in relation to growing energy concerns? It is a way to encourage people to start producing more sustainable energy thereby reducing their dependence on electricity manufactured with fossil fuels.

How Much Can I Earn with Feed in Tariffs?

This gets to the crux of the matter. What are the Feed In Tariffs at the moment? Depending on the total installed capacity will determine how much you receive per kilowatt hour.  For example, a system with an installed capacity of up to 4-10KW is eligible for an FIT rate of 15.44p p/KW/h.  Whereas a 4-10KWp system is eligible for an FIT rate of 13.99p/KW/h.  This rate is paid to you by the energy supplier you subscribe to and it is paid whether you use the energy or feed it into the grid. No one would have imagined several years ago that they would be paid to use electricity, but this is indeed the case with feed in tariffs. The export tariff (how much a consumer is compensated for every kWh of surplus electricity that is fed back into the grid) is 4.5p/KWh for new solar PV systems installed after 1st August 2012. In essence, you are paid to produce and use solar power and you are also paid for the excess you feed back into the grid for consumption by others.

If you have any questions as to how you can benefit from feed in tariffs, consult with an MCS certified installer you can find here on My Redlands Roof. They are listed by location so that you can easily find one in your community.