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Many people in the UK solar industry have been worried that the sudden cuts made by the government to the solar Feed-in-Tariff (FiT) policy would make it nearly impossible to achieve their 2020 solar targets.
The cuts were announced following a report by the consultancy firm Parson Brinkerhoff back in February which claimed that capital expenditure costs for new solar installations would fall by 10-30 percent by the end of the year, a further 5-25 percent by 2014, and continue to fall by small amounts in 2015 and beyond.
However a more recent impact assessment compiled by the government now confirms what many members of the solar industry, that PB’s conclusions about the fall of capital costs were largely overestimated. As a result the government has now decided to cut its 2020 solar targets from 22GW to just 11.9GW.
The report said that “at 11.9GW the central 2020 deployment projection is considerably less than the central estimate in the draft February [impact assessment] at 22GW. This is largely because PB’s estimate for the cost of large-scale PV installations is significantly higher than in their February report, and PB projects much slower reductions in installation costs from 2014 onwards than previously estimated.”
Some industry leaders were angry that the proposed reduction of the 2020 targets was not mentioned in the press release announcing the new impact assessment; instead the focus was on the fact that new cuts to the FiT policy have been delayed in order to give solar companies more time to adjust and prepare for the changes.
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com