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Why the Renewable Heat Incentive is an opportunity too good to miss

Posted by Mark Henderson on 22 June 2012 at 9:47 am

Why the Renewable Heat Incentive  is an opportunity too good to miss

Despite attractive and near-certain returns on investment, take-up of the renewable heat incentive (RHI) far has been very low so far. If the opportunity is too good to miss, what is holding it back?  The world’s first renewable heat incentive (RHI) scheme has been open to applican…

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Eco guest house is first business in Wales to benefit from RHI

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 20 June 2012 at 10:17 am

Eco guest house is first business in Wales to benefit from RHI

A biomass boiler, solar PV and solar thermal are all the result of a Welsh guest house's belief that you should be able to enjoy a holiday without damaging the environment. Installation of the boiler means the guest house has become the first business in Wales to benefit from the Renewable Heat Ince…

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Air source heat pumps make sense without the RHI!

Posted by Chris Davis on 18 June 2012 at 9:09 am

Air source heat pumps make sense without the RHI!

The delay of the domestic portion of the renewable heat incentive (RHI) to summer 2013 may have been disappointing for some customers looking for this as a call to action to upgrade their ageing heating systems. However, with oil prices continuing to rise, increasingly the financial argument for…

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Financial help is available for wood burning boilers

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 15 June 2012 at 10:04 am

Financial help is available for wood burning boilers

Q: Could you point us in the right direction in regards to having an external wood burning boiler installed (for heat and hot water), and would it be covered under a FIT scheme like our solar PV system? A:  Interest in wood burning boilers - also known as biomass boilers - is on the increase…

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Why is solar PV marketed on efficiency, not yield?

Posted by Ian Smith on 14 June 2012 at 11:06 am

Why is solar PV marketed on efficiency, not yield?

I was struck going round Ecobuild in March, not just by the sheer number of exhibitors of PV panels, but by their marketing.  The vast majority were prominently promoting the efficiency of their cells or panels but very few were promoting energy yield at all - and none that I could see for …

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Permitted development rules for non-domestic solar are open to interpretation

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 12 June 2012 at 3:15 pm

Permitted development rules for non-domestic solar are open to interpretation

Q: The wording of the permitted development legislation for non-domestic solar installations 2012, No 748, paragraph 43. A1 (c ) says that development is not permitted if: the solar PV or solar thermal equipment would be installed on a roof and within 1m of the external edge of that roof. It's not …

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45 measures, including renewables, eligible for Green Deal from launch

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 11 June 2012 at 6:14 pm

45 measures, including renewables, eligible for Green Deal from launch

**For the most up-to-date information about the Green Deal, please see our dedicated Green Deal information page.  Renewable energy technologies will be included in the Green Deal it was announced today. While they are unlikely to meet the Golden Rule (the cost of installation can be pai…

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Forget the feed-in tariff; it's all about energy

Posted by David Hunt on 11 June 2012 at 9:04 am

Forget the feed-in tariff; it's all about energy

In the last few years the UK went solar panel crazy, with fantastic return on investment opportunities businesses and home-owners alike fell in love with feed-in tariffs and their lovely shiny solar panels. In the main that was a good thing. Businesses grew in the sector, lots of lovely green ene…

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Does solar hot water work with a combi-boiler?

Posted by Paul Hutchens on 8 June 2012 at 9:05 am

Does solar hot water work with a combi-boiler?

Q: We are about to install a new combi boiler. We also want to install a solar water and CH system. Would like to use an unvented solar store with heat exchanger coil to CH flow on combi (with temperature controlled diverter valve) and the mains pressure cold feed through a heat exchanger in solar s…

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My electricity meter is running backwards: who is responsible?

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 6 June 2012 at 10:05 am

My electricity meter is running backwards: who is responsible?

Q: My solar PV clients are seeing their electricity meters running backward now that the days are longer, and they are unsure how they should treat this with their electricity supplier now that they have become aware. My understanding is that the supplier remains responsible for accurately m…

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How to switch your feed-in tariff (FIT) provider

Posted by Kate Turner on 1 June 2012 at 10:45 am

How to switch your feed-in tariff (FIT) provider

The Feed-in Tariff (FIT) scheme has been running for over two years now, and more than 250,000 installations have been registered since it was launched in 2010. But what happens when the service from the FIT provider isn’t up to scratch and you decide to change your FIT provider? How easy is i…

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Monitor and check: one of the key lessons for the Green Deal

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 31 May 2012 at 11:49 am

Green Deal measures must be checked and monitored after installation to ensure that the quality is good and they are achieving the expected levels of performance. Speaking at yesterday's FLASH Green Deal Conference, organised by the Institute of Sustainability, Paul Ruyssevelt of the Technology S…

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Quit whingeing and make the Green Deal work!

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 31 May 2012 at 9:37 am

Quit whingeing and make the Green Deal work!

OK, the words in the headline are mine but, as Peter Rickaby of energy and environmental consultants Rickaby Thompson pointed out yesterday, the Green Deal is "the only game in town. "It's probably not perfect," he said. "It will take us a while to get it right; and it's up to us to make it happe…

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Win a GEO Minim Home Energy Monitor

Posted by Gilly Jones on 29 May 2012 at 11:50 am

Win a GEO Minim Home Energy Monitor

YouGen is giving away a GEO Minim Home Energy Monitor worth £20. To thank you for Liking our Facebook page before the end of June, we will enter you in the draw to win. Energy bills have risen by 140% in 8 years. But with bills arriving once a quarter, after you've used the electricity, it can…

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The impact of the new feed-in tariff rates for small scale solar PV

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 24 May 2012 at 1:09 pm

The impact of the new feed-in tariff rates for small scale solar PV

Feed-in tariff rates for solar PV installations of 4kW or less will fall from 21p to 16p per kWh from 1 August 2012. This was just one of the changes announced by energy minister Greg Barker in the House of Commons today. He also announced that from 1 August the export rate will increase from 3.…

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Readers' renewable energy tips of the month

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 24 May 2012 at 12:02 pm

Readers' renewable energy tips of the month

We love reading your stories and tips of what works (and doesn't work) for you. Here are this month's favourites: Where you site your air source heat pump is important, as this succinct message from Lizlaw confirms: "Our heat pump warms the house and water consistently, reliably and saves us m…

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How free solar panels can affect your mortgage

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 24 May 2012 at 9:07 am

How free solar panels can affect your mortgage

Q: Will installing solar panels impact on my mortgage? A: Recently the Guardian published an article about a couple that had been refused a mortgage by a number of lenders as they had installed "free" solar panels on their roof, through a "rent-a-roof" scheme. This couple thought they had don…

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Step by step guide to rating your installer on YouGen

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 22 May 2012 at 10:50 am

Step by step guide to rating your installer on YouGen

Word of mouth is the best way to find good products and services, whatever the subject. Here at YouGen we aim to amplify word of mouth, by putting it on the internet. The more feedback a company gets, the better the picture prospective customers will have. So here's a guide to how to rate your in…

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RHI makes some commercial solar hot water systems very attractive

Posted by Gabriel Wondrausch on 21 May 2012 at 9:39 am

RHI makes some commercial solar hot water systems very attractive

Solar thermal was by far the most cost effective renewable energy technology on the market a few years ago. Since the government support schemes have been introduced, first for renewable electricity generating systems via the feed-in tariff and now through the renewable heat incentive (RHI) for non-…

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Buyer beware: don't believe everything a cold caller tells you about solar PV!

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 18 May 2012 at 10:10 am

Buyer beware: don't believe everything a cold caller tells you about solar PV!

Do you know what the difference is between daylight and sunlight? Is there one? I was under the impression that we only have daylight thanks to the sun. Not according to a solar PV salesman who rang me recently. I'm on the telephone preference service, so I don't get many unsolicited phone calls.…

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