OVESCO Sunny Solar Schools has successfully installed 50kW of solar PV at the Cavendish School in Eastbourne and registered for the Feed-in Tariff. A huge thank you goes to SAS our installers and the school for all their hard work to see this project complete at the time the Corona virus caused the school to shut down in the middle of installing solar PV on the roof. We look forward to revisiting the school later in the year to celebrate this project with the school pupils and staff.
After much lobbying from Community Energy England over recent weeks, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy passed The Feed-in Tariffs (Amendment) (Coronavirus) Order 2020 on 30 March.
This gives community FiT projects with an Ofgem eligibility date (when installations must be completed, commissioned, MSC-certified and registered with Ofgem’s FIT register) that falls between 1 March and 31 March 2020 at least an extra six months to complete and register, which must happen by the final deadline of 30 September 2020. There is a short government Explanatory Memorandum, which mirrors some of our communications with BEIS.
For many community energy organisations, missing the original deadline would have meant projects failing and financial damage that might have threatened organisations’ existence. Now we will see more than 1 megawatt of extra community renewable energy capacity, at least £1 million more investment in local solutions by local people and huge long-term community benefit.
The Feed-in Tariff extension has given OVESCO Sunny Solar Schools (OSSS) a lifeline to install solar PV at Pound Hill Junior School in Crawley, which closed because of the Corona virus. The school is managed by University of Brighton Academies Trust who are working with OSSS to reschedule installing solar PV and we hope to see 30kW of solar on the roof of the school soon.
OVESCO, Community Energy South and Community Energy England would like to thank the team at BEIS, Ofgem, the Minister and his office and all members who provided information at short notice and supported our advocacy work in other ways.