The main funding available in recent years was the Government’s Low Carbon Build Programme. This was a grant scheme, however this funding is now closed for new applications. There is now no up front funding available for householders and only limited amounts for Community Organisations. All funding now available comes in the form of a guaranteed payment based on the amount of electricity or heat you generate and the amount of electricity that you feed back into the National Grid. The current funding streams are:
Under the Feed in Tariff energy suppliers will make regular payments to householders who generate their own electricity from renewable or low carbon technologies. These payments vary depending on the technology, and are guaranteed for up to 25 years (depending on the technology installed).
A payment will also be made for all unused electricity exported to the Grid.
All eligible installations must be Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) approved both in terms of the technology installed and the installer.
Renewable technologies that qualify for the Feed in Tariff are:
The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a financial payment similar to the Feed in Tariff but focuses solely on producing heat. The funding will pay an amount every quarter based on how many kilowatt hours (kWh) of heat have been produced, recorded on a heat meter. The payments will be for 20 years.
The funding will only be available to people who install technology to produce heating or hot water from renewable sources. This includes:
The scheme is being introduced in two phases. The first phase focuses on the non-domestic sector.
The full RHI for the domestic sector will be introduced in October 2012 to coincide with the launch of the Green Deal. However, householders who install renewable technology from July 2011 will be able to claim Renewable Heat Incentive Premium Payments. These are one off payments as follows:
Following these payments all installations from July 2011 will qualify for the full RHI.
For more information on the Renewable Heat Incentive visit the Department of Energy & Climate Change website.
A number of companies are now offering free solar panels to produce electricity. They tend to only offer these to people with south facing roofs. These offers can be an easy way of producing free electricity but you are entering a 25 year agreement with the company. Therefore you need to make sure that this type of offer is what you want.
Before you enter any agreement make sure you ask the correct questions and make sure you are entirely happy with the company and product. The Energy Saving Trust has a very useful page on consumer guidance on free solar panels.
There are various ways for Community Groups to fund renewable energy installations. Some are only available to groups in Sheffield. Always contact your energy supplier to see if they can provide any support. The following are grants and links to grant databases and resources to help you find your funding.