National solar energy campaign wins MP’s support

Solar Britain
Solar Britain

Local MP Mike Weir has given his support to a national campaign to double the number of solar roofs across the UK to one million by 2015.

The bid, by the Solar Trade Association, is also supported by Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, The Eden Project, 10:10, Forum for the Future and Global Action Plan.

At the launch event last week, Mr Weir met with John Forster, head of Angus-based Forster Energy which makes a significant contribution to the country’s solar market.

The business is growing steadily alongside its sister roofing company, which now provides the roofs for one in five new homes in Scotland as well as a roof replacement service for the public sector and social housing.

Mr Weir said that, with a team of more than 120 and head office staff of 27, the company is already an important part of the Angus economy and has been involved in a number of prestige projects. This includes a substantial contract supplying solar and roofing to the Commonwealth Games’ athletes’ village.

He said: “Solar provides an excellent way to generate renewable energy and can be incorporated into many new builds and as part of planned replacement of existing roofs.

“The Feed-In Tariff which supports investors in solar power, has reduced by 65 per cent since the schemes started in 2010. However, dramatic cost reductions in PV module prices and efficient installation methods mean returns for domestic investors in solar power today remain as good as when the scheme started.”

The STA has developed an online information point offering expert advice on how to go solar at which includes an estimated returns ‘calculator’. The industry currently installs around 100,000 solar power systems in UK homes every year. The STA recommends that anyone seeking to go solar gets at least three quotes from companies that are members of the Renewable Energy Consumer Code.